The target opening date for a proposed new Northallerton primary school to serve housing development in the town has been revised to September 2024.
Delays in construction at the North Northallerton Development Area (NNDA) site have also resulted in a delay to the transfer of the site for a new primary school to ourselves. This means that it is no longer practicable to achieve delivery of the school prior to September 2024.
Stuart Carlton, Director for Children and Young People’s Services, said: “We continue to work closely with the developers on this project but it has not yet been possible to complete the transfer of the serviced site to County Council ownership, something that was expected several months ago.
“There has been recent progress and we welcome that, but the delay already experienced has impacted on our delivery programme to the point where we no longer have confidence that we could complete the project in readiness for a September 2023 opening.
“We have therefore taken the difficult, but necessary, decision to delay opening by one year. We have liaised closely with Dales Academies Trust on this, and we are very pleased that they remain committed to working in partnership with us.
“We continually assess local pupil numbers and they are not currently rising by the previously projected rate, which means that we see the availability of school places to be a manageable situation in the interim period before the new school opens.
“We will of course keep this under review. While this delay is disappointing, we still recognise the significant growth expected through housing construction at the NNDA and remain committed to providing the school places required to serve the development.’’
The school will be a state-funded academy, in line with Department for Education guidance and Dales Academies Trust has been appointed by the Department for Education to run the new primary free school on opening.
Damian Chubb, Chief Executive of the Dales Trust said: “We understand why the County Council has delayed by one year and we share their disappointment that this has become necessary. The Trust remains completely committed to the new school. We look forward to developing, at the earliest possible opportunity, an excellent and inclusive provision available to all, offering parents the choice of a Church of England school education at the heart of this new community.”