School ‘struggling’ to fit in all its pupils

Carleton, with Carleton Green Primary School centre
Carleton, with Carleton Green Primary School centre
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A primary school ‘struggling’ to cope with the number of pupils it teaches has revealed plans to build an extension.

Carleton Green Community Primary School now has so many pupils its dinner hall is no longer big enough to comply with government guidelines, documents lodged with Wyre Council revealed.

Lunchtimes have to be staggered for youngsters, while nursery children can’t attend assemblies, headteacher Susan McGrath said.

PE lessons prove difficult, with equipment having to be stored outside, she added.

Mrs McGrath told The Gazette the extension would help the school ‘to be a family and celebrate success together’.

She said: “It just means the school would move in the right direction together. It’s phenomenal what camaraderie can do.

“Parents know it’s something we want to do.

“We have mentioned it quite a few times. They come to assemblies and they can see how full we get.”

New flexible learning space, which would be used for lessons and breakfast and after-school clubs, is also planned, alongside a unisex toilet with disabled access.

Chartered surveyor Jeff Heskine said in planning papers: “The school is struggling to meet its curriculum requirements and the provision of school dinners because the hall formed part of the original school building and has a floor area of only 132.7sqm, which is less than the Department for Education guideline for a school of 120 pupils.

“This school of 315 pupils should have hall accommodation of around 194.5sqm.”

Although an existing nurture room and arts area would be lost, activities would instead be held in the new learning space, the plans revealed.

Doors giving direct access to the playground will come in handy for the before and after-school clubs, Mrs McGrath added.

If planners at Wyre Council give the go ahead, and funding from within the school’s budget can be found, the single-storey extension will be built in the same style as the original school building.