Croydon Council this week secured the highest allocation of funds in the UK for new schools and classrooms
Croydon is receiving a £63m funding package from the Department of Education following predictions that by 2017, Croydon will see a 28 per cent increase in school age children, from 52,000 to 66,000. This funding, around £20m more than educational authorities in Manchester and Kent will receive, forms part of Croydon’s £163m two year capital expansion programme.
The Department of Education has been working with local authorities to redesign the annual school capacity survey to better allocate resources across the UK. A spokesperson for the Department said: “This more detailed data will ensure that the distribution of funding to local authorities for additional school places should be fairer, more accurate and better value for money.”
The council have begun to develop educational infrastructure, including the creation of 26 new permanent classes in each primary year group. There are also plans for two new secondary schools to be built, each of which will have an intake of 180 pupils per year, including a proposed academy in South Norwood.
St Andrew’s Church of England High School has also benefited from the expansion plans, with the introduction of a sixth form college in September 2013.
David Matthews, Headteacher of St Andrew’s, said: “We are delighted that the Council are able to direct significant funding into education. Education is the future. Good schools attract business to Croydon as employees know that their children will have a good education.”
Of the 3,861 Croydon children who applied on time for a secondary school place this autumn, each received an offer, a 2 per cent improvement on the previous year.
Councillor Tim Pollard, Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Learning, said: “Not only are we ensuring that every child has a place, but we are also working hard to make Croydon’s educational standards something to be truly proud of. This work is already paying off and we have seen GCSE results improve and exceed national averages year-on-year.”