Proposal to increase the capacity and alter the designation of Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College, Farnborough – Consultation

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The County Council wish to consult with you ahead of its proposal to increase the capacity of Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College, Farnborough and to alter its designation

Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College is currently a 205 place special school for 4-16 year old pupils with Moderate Learning Disabilities (MLD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

The County Council is proposing to increase the capacity of the school by adding a new unit catering for 90 pupils aged 10-16 years with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs. This will, if approved, give a final overall capacity of 295 places at Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College and its designation as a special school catering for pupils with MLD, ASD & SEMH needs. The new unit is planned to open in phases from September 2022.

Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College is successfully meeting the needs of MLD & ASD children and has the site available and leadership expertise to expand to encompass catering for pupils with a range of social, emotional and mental health difficulties in a safe and secure environment. 

To accommodate the increased number of places, it is proposed that the existing surplus area to the east of the Samuel Cody Specialist Sports College campus is used to house a new two storey teaching accommodation block, all required external facilities and independent drop off, pick up and parking facilities. The proposed works will include all required accommodation and an appropriate learning environment for the 90-place SEMH Unit.  There will be no shared facilities with the MLD/ASD provision.

Reason for proposal

Hampshire County Council is committed to expanding successful provision where possible to meet demand.  There is an increased and growing need to provide support for pupils with social, emotional and mental health difficulties in this area of the county. This proposal will provide much needed specialist educational accommodation to meet current and future demand.

Where a Local Authority proposes to permanently enlarge a special school’s capacity by 10% or more it must follow a procedure set out by the Department for Education. This information and some Frequently Asked Questions are available on the following website; http://consultations.hants.gov.uk/active.aspx

The Consultation

The purpose of this consultation is to seek the view of all stakeholders on the principle of increasing the school capacity to meet the demand for additional special school places in the north of Hampshire.

The consultation and decision-making process is outlined below:

  • This initial consultation will run from the 13 November to 24 December 2020.
  • A report outlining the consultation responses received will then be taken to the Elected Member for Children’s Services Decision Day in January 2021 to decide if the proposal should continue to the formal statutory consultation stage.
  • If approved, a statutory Public Notice would be published in February 2021, setting out Hampshire County Council’s intent to increase the capacity of the school and to add to its designation. This is a four week period in which any representations can be made to the local authority.

A final report would then be taken to Elected Member for Children’s Services Decision Day in March 2021 who will decide whether or not to proceed with the proposal.

Frequently asked questions

Site plans and project appraisal

Further Information

Due to Covid-19 restrictions and ensuring public safety, unfortunately we are unable to hold a public drop-in event at the school. However please send in your views and queries by email to strategicplanningunit@hants.gov.uk.

If you would like to speak to an Officer then please make that request by email, briefly outlining your query so we can arrange a mutually convenient time for you to speak to an appropriate officer, either via conference call or telephone. To access this website please follow the link below: http://consultations.hants.gov.uk/active.aspx

If you are unable to email or visit the above website and wish to make a comment then please write to Claire Campling, SEN Service Manager, Children’s Services Department, EII Court North, Winchester, Hampshire SO23 8UG by 24 December 2020.