Leeds to need extra 990 year seven places over coming years, as two schools set to get capacity boost

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Two schools in Leeds could soon add an extra 600 secondary school places, according to documents set to be discussed by council decision-makers next week.

Both Leeds West Academy and Allerton Grange School want to increase their capacities from 1,200 to 1,500 over the next couple of years.

One of the reports warns that nearly 1,000 new year seven places are likely to be needed across the city over the next few years.

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A report on Allerton Grange School suggests the new places should be available from September 2021, with space for an extra 60 year seven pupils. The expansion of the school is expected to cost around £4.82m.

Many more school places are expected to be needed in the coming years. Photo: GettyMany more school places are expected to be needed in the coming years. Photo: Getty
Many more school places are expected to be needed in the coming years. Photo: Getty

It added: “There is a clearly identified need for additional secondary places in the inner north area of Leeds to meet an increase in pupil numbers in future years. Allerton Grange School is popular and has already admitted more pupils than its Published Admission Number (PAN) for the past four years to help meet demand in the area.

“The school is located within an area of high demographic need, with limited alternative options available to respond to this. The proposed 60 additional permanent year seven places would provide some much needed additional capacity in Roundhay/Moortown to help manage future pressure.”

Another report outlined the council’s intention to expand Leeds West Academy by the same number of places by September 2022.

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It stated that the amount of money available from Government to expand the school is around £5.269m, although it is expected the expansion could be cheaper.

The report claimed the rise in the city’s birth rate over the past decade had led to an increase in the number primary school places, but warned this was soon to filter through to the secondary system.

It added: “Demand (is) anticipated to grow markedly across most parts of the city until at least 2023-24. Current demographic data suggests that up to an additional 33 forms of entry of year seven capacity may be required across the city over future years, with up to five forms entry of additional year seven capacity needed across the West of Leeds.”

To put this into context, one form of entry works out at around 30 pupils, meaning an extra 990 places could be needed across the city in year seven alone.

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Both of the plans above together would contribute to two forms of entry each, making up 120 of the total year seven spaces needed.

Due to government rules around schools, local education authorities are not allowed to open new schools, meaning councils have to meet the need for places by expanding existing schools under local authority control.

The plans to increase the size of the two schools are set to be discussed at Leeds City Council’s executive board on Wednesday June 24.