23 May 2013

New junior age school places planned for Hove

Plans for creating new junior age school places in Hove in September 2014 have taken a massive step forward.

Brighton & Hove City Council has bought the former Hove police station site on Holland Road. Detailed design work is already underway to convert it to cater for four forms of entry to complement the infant classes at West Hove Infant School’s Connaught site.

The council is to consult on a proposal for West Hove Junior School to run the new junior age classes at the Hove Police Station site. The intention is to mirror the success of West Hove Infant School’s expansion onto the Connaught site and give pupils continuity as they change school.

The governing body of West Hove Junior School has agreed in principle to this proposal, but will make a final decision following the consultation.

The proposal would see the Connaught site and the police station site formally linked in the same way that West Hove Infants and West Hove Juniors are. This would mean that pupils at the Connaught site would be able to transfer to the Hove police station site at the end of Year 2.

A six-week consultation period will start on Monday 3 June. If the proposal is agreed following consultation, there will be a four-week statutory notice period starting on 2 September. Following this the council’s children and young people committee would make a final decision in the autumn.

A meeting has been arranged for Monday 3 June at the Connaught site where education officials will update parents on the plans and answer questions.

The chair of the council’s children and young people committee, Councillor Sue Shanks, said: "This is great news for parents in Hove. The former police station was our preferred site for junior age places to complement the Connaught site, and we’ve worked really hard to secure it.

“We believe that building on an existing strong partnership between the two West Hove schools is the best way of ensuring that the new junior school places at the police station site on Holland Road match the high standards that children, parents and carers have now at West Hove Infant School’s Connaught site.

“Our property and design team has an outstanding track record in working with private sector partners to deliver school building projects on time and on budget – including the fabulous job they did at Connaught a couple of years ago.”

A planning application to use the police station site for educational purposes is expected in the next month or two.