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Thursday
30  May

£300m school building programme to be agreed

 
18/04/2024 @ 07:41

A school building programme worth £300 million over the next decade is due to be agreed by senior Powys councillors next month.

Of the £300 million, the council would need to stump up just over £100 million with just under £200 million would come from the Welsh Government and £1.8 million from church funding.

One of the projects involves a new school near Kerry.

Powys County Council’s Liberal Democrat/Labour cabinet will receive a report asking for the go ahead to submit a new Strategic Outline Programme (SOP) to the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Communities for Learning’s nine-year rolling programme.

Ahead of the cabinet meeting, the council’s Learning and Skills scrutiny committee will get to have their say on the council’s school building wish list when they meet on Tuesday, April 23.

The Welsh Government has asked local authorities to submit their proposal and yhe difference between old 21st Century Schools Programme and the new funding programme is that councils now need to outline a “rolling programme” of proposals for up to nine years.

These will be split into three sections of three years each.

The first three years up to 2027 will be made up of projects expected to reach a “full business case.”

The projects in the second three-year period up to 2030 are those that are being developed and need to through consultation periods.

The last section covers long term “pipeline” projects beyond 2030.

The report said: “Cabinet will need to consider the appropriate sources to fund the council’s contributions.”

The council’s contribution which is estimated to be just over £35 million out of a total estimated cost of £109 million for the first three years – is already factored into the authority’s capital programme.

According to the report this sum will be funded by a mix of money from asset sales (capital receipts) and borrowing.

The report said: “The funding for the remaining years has yet to be
finalised.

“Any substantial increase in borrowing to fund the future schemes will have a detrimental impact on the council’s revenue budget which is currently under extreme pressure.

“The detail of how the schemes can be financed will be developed through later stages of the business cases and will be subject to further approval as that progresses.”

Cabinet is recommended to approve the report when they meet to discuss it on May 7.

The projects to be delivered in the first three years of the programme are:

Ysgol Bro Hyddgen – Machynlleth new all through primary and secondary school campus.

Ysgol Bro Dderwen – new primary school in Newtown

Brynllywarch Special School in Kerry – new building.

Sennybridge primary school – new building.

Ysgol Golwg Pen y Fan in Brecon – new school building following the mergers of Cradoc and Mount Street infant and junior schools.

Years four to six:

Re-configuration of Ysgol Bro Caereinion all through primary and secondary school in Llanfair Caereinion – which is expected to become a Welsh medium school.

New facilities for the Ysgol Calon Cymru’s Llandrindod Wells campus which is expected to become an English medium secondary school.

Remodelling of the Ysgol Calon Cymru Builth Wells campus – which is expected to become a new all age Welsh medium primary and secondary school.

These proposals are dependent on how the School Transformation Programme pans out.

Years seven to nine.

During this period Powys say they will concentrate on reorganising the Llanfyllin catchment area which could see:

A new Church-in-Wales (CiW) primary school building to replace Llansantffraid
and Llanfechain school buildings.

A new area school to potentially replace, primary schools in Arddleen, Four Crosses, Llanymynech, and Crew Green.

Ysgol Llanfyllin – a new campus for all age primary and secondary school.

Comments from scrutiny are expected to be added to the report that goes before the cabinet.

 

 

 

 

 

By Elgan Hearn, Local Democracy Reporting Service