Pupils at South Shore Academy’s new building are already benefitting from their new state-of-the-art building, say staff.
Pupils will continue to “thrive and learn” at South Shore Academy’s new base, the school’s acting principal has pledged.
Neil Reynolds said the benefits of the new building - which opened this term, more than 50 years after the original school premises were built – have already been seen.
“The new state-of-the-art building has enriched the opportunities for every student that attends South Shore Academy,” he said.
The new school, allocated under the Priority Schools Building Programme, includes seven state of the art science laboratories, four technology workshops, music and drama rooms, and a stand-alone sports facility with dance studio.
The new building includes a learning centre, dubbed the Galaxy Suite, and there is also a drama studio, music facilities and a main hall with retractable seating.
Mr Reynolds added: “The students are really fortunate to have these excellent facilities and I am sure that they will continue to thrive and learn as we continue to improve and develop the positive journey that South Shore Academy is on.”
The old school building closed its doors for the last time over the summer and will be demolished in October.
Once demolition has been completed, South Shore Academy will have an all-weather multi-use games pitch and a natural wildlife garden, as well as the current playing fields and hard-court areas.
The front of the school, adjacent to St Anne’s Road, will be landscaped with trees and shrubs. There will also be extra parking bays.
The new premises have already led to improved student experiences, say staff.
“Bright Futures Educational Trust has been instrumental in ensuring that the building is equipped with new ICT hardware, plasma screens in all teaching spaces, specialist science and design technology equipment together with new furniture in all rooms,” said David Milroy, from the academy.
“The separate sports hall and dance studio will enable all our students to engage in a wider range of sports and games including football, cricket, basketball, netball, hockey and athletics.”
Students got their first proper look at the school when they returned after the summer break.
One pupil, Tiegan Dickinson said: “It’s a great new school with lots of extra facilities and it inspires me to want to learn more.
“The classrooms have a lot more space and are more open which helps the teachers run their lessons more fluently.”
Another, Zak Jennings said: “The new building is a massive improvement and provides all the students with a lot more opportunities because of its superb facilities.”
The original school was built in 1966 to replace the old Palatine School and cost around £300,000 at the time.
The decision to name it Palatine High School caused controversy as councillors wanted to rename the school and give it a fresh start. However, school staff and the community were against the decision and the Palatine name lived on.
More recently, the school changed its name to Knowle High School in 1988 and then went back to Palatine before changing its name to South Shore when it became an academy in 2013.
South Shore Academy is holding an open evening on Thursday, October 12, offering potential pupils and their parents the chance to look around the new school building. The open evening is from 5pm to 9pm.
For more information, visit www.southshoreacademy.co.uk or call 01253 336500.