Consultation on proposal to increase the capacity of St Francis Special School, Fareham

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Hampshire County Council would like to hear your views on the proposal to increase the capacity for St Francis Special School, Fareham

St Francis School is a 94 place special school catering for 2-19 year old pupils with severe and complex learning difficulties (SLD). The County Council is proposing to increase the capacity of the school by adding an additional 9 places. This will give a final overall capacity of 103 places at St Francis Special School.

St Francis Special School is successfully meeting the needs of children with a range of difficulties in a safe and secure environment. 

To accommodate the increased number of places, it is proposed that the County Council is to use an existing single modular classroom. The works will provide additional teaching accommodation to enable more children to attend the school.

Reason for proposal

Hampshire County Council is committed to expanding successful provision where possible to meet demand. Currently there is an increased need to provide support for pupils with difficulties in this area of the county. This proposal will provide much needed specialist educational capacity to meet this increased need.

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.

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 Fareham area.

The consultation and decision-making process is outlined below:

  • This initial consultation will run from the 26 March to 7 May 2021.
  • A report outlining the consultation responses received will then be taken to the Elected Member for Children’s Services Decision Day in May 2021 to decide if the proposal should continue to the formal statutory consultation stage.
  • If approved, a statutory Public Notice would be published in June 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 July 2021 who will decide whether or not to proceed with the proposal.

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 [email protected].

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.

If you are unable to email or visit the above website and wish to make a comment then please write to Claire Campling, Assistant SEN Service Manager, Children’s Services Department, EII Court North, Winchester, Hampshire SO23 8UG by 7 May 2021.