Just seven years after it opened, in September next year St Francis Church of England Primary School will have eight extra classrooms as well as enlarged community facilities and a bigger hall.
The steel structure is in place next to the school ready for walls and the roof before the worst of the winter weather. The extra classrooms will allow the school to accommodate a permanent two form entry. Currently there are 350 children and the number will rise to 420, plus a fifty place nursery.
Horsley Huber Architects – the same firm that designed the school – is responsible for the extension. The £3 million funding comes substantially from the previous government’s successful schools building programme, and also Swindon Council and the Diocese of Bristol. There would have been a major crisis in the provision of primary school places in North Swindon if the decision to fund the school had come after the election when school building projects were stopped.
Headteacher Clive Westall said, “the expansion to two forms of entry makes planning and organisation easier and provides more opportunity to hold after school clubs. The larger community room with its own entrance puts us more clearly at the heart of community life.”
Pupil Brooke Davies said she liked the idea of having a food technology room because she liked cooking and Sam Dibble said having classrooms upstairs was going to be unusual.