Local MP welcomes Education Secretary approval of new Special School in Soundwell

May 05 2020

Local MP Chris Skidmore has welcomed news that the Education Secretary has approved a new special school in his constituency.

Chris has long campaigned to ensure that the former Soundwell College site be put to an educational use. This announcement means that the Kingswood constituency will have had its sixth new school since Chris became MP back in 2010.

The funding agreement, which has now been reached with the Learn@ Multi Academy Trust, will lead to a new 136 place special school. When it opens this September, it will provide education for 5-18 year olds with Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN) and Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH).

In the letter sent on behalf of the Education Secretary by the Regional Schools Commissioner to Learn@, it said “I want to take this opportunity to thank you for the great commitment and energy which you and your colleagues have shown in reaching this point.” 

Chris is now continuing to campaign for a seventh additional new school - a secondary school at Lyde Green, and is continuing to push for this at Westminster.

Chris said: “This new school is another example of the Government’s education policy to improve choice and drive up standards for all pupils whatever their needs.

We know that the number of children with complex needs is growing and so I am delighted that the Learn@ Soundwell School will bring new opportunities for children in Kingswood and the wider Bristol area and look forward to visiting it myself once it is open.”

He added: “Local people have been concerned at the eyesore the site has been become since it closed and so it’s great to see that this former campus will come back into use and once again serve local education needs.”