Councillor Mhairi Hunter asked the following question at this month’s full Council meeting. I replied as Executive Member for Education and Young People on behalf of the Labour administration led by Councillor Gordon Matheson.
Can the Leader of the Council advise why ASL secondary schools were not included in the mainstream secondary school estate rebuilding programme?
Secondary schools focused on additional support for learning were considered as part of the Council’s programme to improve its school estate which began in 1996. Council decisions then followed from 1998 including a major secondary school programme with schools replaced by new builds or major refurbishments, reducing the number by more than a quarter. At the same time, the Pre-12 strategy was also being developed.
The results are over 110 new establishments, including additional support for learning secondary schools, all being in high quality accommodation. The Council financed this though an ambitious mixture of Public-Private Finance, prudential borrowing and its own capital funds.
Examples of additional support for learning secondaries which were included are the new build at Hazelwood, formed from the closure of Kelvin and Carnbooth – which has won a range of national and international architecture awards – and a major refurbishment of Cardinal Winning Secondary School which was formed from the closure of St Joan of Arc and St Aidan’s.
We are continuing to explore options for our additional support for learning schools through the Labour administration’s promise, confirmed at full Council in June by the Council Leader, to improve not only primary schools but all buildings across the education estate, investing for all Glasgow’s young people.
Hollybrook Academy in Govanhill is attended by pupils from across the city’s south side and recently received £205,000 of new windows, replaced this summer through £1.7million window replacement work in eight schools, part of education’s £5million capital programme this financial year.
For our manifesto pledge to refurbish or rebuild local schools, citywide assessment of all buildings across the wider education estate began in July and will be completed next month. Councillors will make decisions on priorities for investment by the end of this year.