Classrooms urgently needed to meet rising pupil demandnews
26th January 2018
Scape Group have reported that 14,500 additional secondary school classrooms will be required over the next three years to meet a surge in pupil numbers.
The public sector procurement specialist say a large amount of construction work is needed for the additional 434646 pupils that will be joining the secondary school system in 2020.
527 additional classrooms will be required in Scotland, 340 in Wales, and 318 in Northern Ireland. But the highest anticipated growth is in England, where 13,337 extra classrooms are needed, according to Scape’s report.
The Capital is set to experience a 15.5% rise in numbers, equating to 2,500 classrooms or 73 schools.
But the highest increase in the country is set to be the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, where 40% rise in secondary school pupil numbers by 2020 is expected.
Manchester City Council are forecasted to see the biggest increase outside of London, with a 35% increase in numbers of school pupils in the next three years.
Scape Group chief executive Mark Robinson said: “Secondary school pupil numbers are set to rise significantly and there is a real risk that if we do not increase the output of new secondary school classrooms there will be significant pressure on places across the UK.”
“We must ensure there is a joined-up approach that embraces modern methods of construction such as modular and offsite techniques, which can deliver schools quickly and cost-effectively.”
Fran Cox, operations director at school building specialist Sunesis, said “It currently takes far too long to secure planning for new schools and, with the equivalent of 14,522 classrooms required by 2020, we are running out of time to ensure pupils will have a sufficient space in which to learn.”
She continued “Commitment to offsite or modular construction is an obvious way in which government can help tackle this school places challenge, as it offers clear timescales for delivery, flexibility and certainty of cost for both school extensions and new schools.”
Written by Ian Johnson