Development of an early years special education needs hub for the Andover area could go ahead if an agreement is reached over capital spending in Hampshire.
The capital invested in the refurbishment and expansion of schools and new school buildings across Hampshire is set to go even further if agreement is given to a revised Children’s Services capital programme for 2014/15.
The £33.2 million boost has come about as a result of the Council reviewing its overall £765m three year programme to make every pound go further, maximising the opportunities to lever further Government and private sector funding where possible.
Hampshire County Council’s unprecedented programme of work to refurbish, extend and build new school buildings, to meet the growing demand for primary school places, has been broadened. The updated programme will also include additional improvement works and the refurbishment and expansion of pre-school and nursery accommodation to support the implementation of early education for two year olds from lower income households.
If agreed, the programme will fund a range of schemes across the county, including:
- New classrooms for Herne Junior School in Petersfield and Tiptoe Primary in Lymington
- Refurbishment and expansion schemes for 30 pre-school and nursery settings, across the county, creating additional places for two year olds
- Improved car parking arrangements at Bentley Primary School, near Farnham
- Extending planned work at Riders Infant and Junior Schools in Havant to include expansion of the library and administration area
- Projects to improve accessibility at over 20 schools in the county
- The transformation of children’s homes
- Development of an early years special education needs hub for the Andover area.
Councillor Keith Mans, Executive Lead Member for Children’s Services at Hampshire County Council, commented: “I will be scrutinising the revised programme to ensure that the proposed additional schemes meet this department’s commitment to provide quality resources where they are most needed and that the funding is being prioritised appropriately before making any final decision. That said, I can see that the proposals are in keeping with the County Council’s strategic aims in terms of delivering high quality, cost effective public services and working with communities to enhance local services.“
The Council’s overall Capital Programme is £765million over three years – the largest ever injection of public sector capital into Hampshire – creating jobs, demand for materials and new and improved school buildings, care facilities such as Extra Care units, roads and transport infrastructure.
Final decisions will be made at the Executive Lead Member for Children’s Services Decision Day on 25 July 2014.