Discussions to start on significant investment in primary education in Bangor

Date 19/01/2017

Discussions to start on significant investment
in primary education in Bangor

Gwynedd Council’s Cabinet has approved a recommendation to begin discussions regarding significant investment in primary education for the city of Bangor.
Gwynedd Council’s Education Department has been successful in its recent bid for Welsh Government funding to invest in education within the Bangor catchment area. The Government has agreed in principal to contribute £6,365,000 from its 21st Century Schools Programme towards a wider financial package of £12,730,000 which will include a contribution from the Council, allowing the Authority to review and improve the existing situation in Bangor.

The housing developer Redrow has also pledged a contribution as part of the agreement relating to the new Goetre Uchaf development at Penrhosgarnedd. This funding acknowledges that the development includes 245 new houses the potential for more than 90 primary school-age children and 70 secondary school-age children to be living in them.

With some primary schools in the area already over capacity, coupled with the potential for a further increase in the number of pupils in the future, the Council has concluded that primary education provisions in Bangor need to be reviewed.

Councillor Gareth Thomas, Gwynedd Council’s Cabinet Member for Education, said: “Following the Council’s Cabinet’s approval to carry out a review of primary education in the city of Bangor, local discussions will now get underway with headteachers, staff and governors of the catchment area’s schools, as well as the city’s local members. There will be an opportunity to review primary schools across the catchment area by considering different options in order to secure the best possible education for the children and young people of Bangor.

“This substantial investment enables us to look at the primary education provision in Bangor. This will enable us to begin a local discussion to secure the best options about the way forward for us to improve the provision and offer education of the highest possible standards to all of the city’s children.”

Following the support of the Council’s Cabinet, local discussions on reviewing primary school education in Bangor will begin. The next step will involve forming a Catchment Review Panel over the coming months which will include headteachers, governors and local elected members so that the options can be identified and discussed before a favoured option - which will meet the area’s educational needs for the future - can be agreed upon. A detailed business plan will also be presented to the Welsh Government for consideration.

Every one of Gwynedd Council’s bids under the 21st Century Schools Programme has been approved so far. The Programme’s main aim is to provide a first rate education by ensuring that classrooms are suitable and that schools benefit from high quality leadership. The Programme also aims to promote and strengthen the Welsh language, develop interactive and creative long-term plans, make the best use of the facilities available, high quality teaching environment for pupils and teachers and develop schools which are the focal point for community activities.