First Suffolk school named in government rebuilding programme

Ormiston Sudbury Academy

A Suffolk secondary school is set to benefit from a government rebuilding programme as part of the latest cohort of announcements. - Credit: Google Maps

A Suffolk secondary school is set to benefit from a government rebuilding programme as part of the latest set of announcements.

Ormiston Sudbury Academy is listed in the latest set of schools to receive funding for rebuilding and refurbishment projects.

There are currently 161 projects in the programme and Ormiston Sudbury Academy is the only Suffolk school to have been named as a beneficiary.

This news comes shortly after it was found that nearly 100 schools in Suffolk have been found in need of "immediate" repairs in a report from the Department for Education (DfE).

Ninety schools in Suffolk were given a 'D' rating for at least one building on their premises, meaning they are deemed "life expired and/or serious risk of imminent failure".

The school rebuilding programme is delivered by the DfE and carries out major rebuilding and refurbishment projects at school and sixth-form college buildings across England.

James Cleverly, MP for Braintree

Education secretary James Cleverly announced the Sudbury school's inclusion in a letter to MP James Cartlidge. - Credit: Richard Townshend Photography

In a letter written to South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge, the secretary of state for education James Cleverly said: "We will replace or refurbish one or more buildings at the school below [Ormiston Sudbury Academy], as appropriate for the condition of the buildings on its site.

"This will help transform the educational environment and benefit pupils at the school for decades to come."

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The school's principal, Caroline Wilson, said: "We are delighted that Ormiston Sudbury Academy has been selected as one of 61 schools to receive investment.

"We are really excited to be taking this opportunity forward over the coming months and we will continue to keep our community updated on our plans, as soon as we have more details."

The first 50 schools to benefit from the scheme were published on February 5, 2021 with a further 50 announced on July 19, 2021.

The third set of 61 schools, including Ormiston Sudbury Academy, was released on July 12, 2022.

During the latest nomination process, which launched in early 2022 and closed at the end of March, 1,105 schools were put forward to be considered for funding.

Schools selected for the scheme were prioritised because they met one or more of the following criteria:

  • their buildings have specific construction types which require replacement
  • they were identified in the CDC programme as having the highest condition need
  • their buildings were a high priority for replacement due to being in severe and urgent condition

The DfE is still assessing the remaining nominations received and has not ruled out any nominated schools from selection at this point.

Another set of prioritised schools will be announced before the end of the financial year and the government plans to name 300 beneficiaries in total in 2022 to 2023.