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Learning centre gets cabinet approval

Published Thursday, 24 October 2013

At their meeting on Wednesday 16 October, Enfield Council’s Cabinet Members approved proposals to build a brand new purpose built learning centre for pupils excluded from mainstream education.

The plan is to build a centre at Bullsmoor Lane, in north-west Enfield, on a site of a horticultural nursery. Some resources will be shared with the neighbouring Capel Manor primary school.

The new centre is for 100 pupils aged from 11 – 16 to use the building at any one time, although it will cater for 150 pupils some of whom will attend college or other provision in the borough on some days.

Earlier this year, Enfield Council’s service for excluded pupils received an ‘outstanding’ judgement from Ofsted inspectors despite being on three separate sites: Eldon Centre in Edmonton, Swan Annexe in Ponders End and the Newbury Centre in the south west of the borough.

Cllr Ayfer Orhan, Enfield’s Cabinet Member for Children & Young People, said, “I am very proud that we are discussing the plans for a learning centre that will support pupils who need extra support and direction. We must never write off our children – they can all learn and all have something to offer.

“The quality of the building and the resources that it will offer will improve learning and help these pupils to move back into mainstream schools. It will show them that they are valued, and a new modern building will create a strong learning environment.

“In one building staff can work together, our young people will see for themselves that we want them to do well and with the expertise of a committed staff I am confident that this service will retain its ‘outstanding’ Ofsted status.”

Headteacher, Gary Lefley, said, “Pupils who have been excluded from school will be able to prepare for a successful return to mainstream education wherever possible. 

“For those whose needs are best met in a smaller, more contained environment, this centre will offer an environment where they can achieve eight or more GCSEs, or their equivalent, or continue in education, training or employment.

“Catering for the most challenging and complex behaviour needs it will be a top quality alternative education with a proven track record.”

The council will be consulting on the plans with local people, parents, pupils and the wider community. Building works are expected to start next year ready for September 2015.

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