St. Andrew’s C of E Lower School

Everyone who comes to visit our school is impressed with the calm, light and spacious environment which has been created.

Susannah Hunt, Assistant Head Teacher & Head of East Site

Introduction

An increase in residential schemes in Biggleswade created the need for more school places in the area; Sunesis responded to this with the creation of an additional site to St Andrew’s C of E Lower School

Model

Paxton primary school

Budget

£4.45m

Framework

Scape Major Works

Construction

42 weeks

Project facts

300

new school places provided

10

brand new classrooms

10/10

client satisfaction

Biggleswade’s increased population

Increasing residential growth in the area created the need to accommodate a rise in the school places requirement. Pupil applications have been steadily increasing so a whole new site was required to provide suitable learning spaces for more children.

Speed

Due to Central Bedfordshire Council’s urgent need to cope with the huge demand for places, Sunesis ensured that delivery was completed within 18 months, finishing as anticipated.

Site

The proposed space for the East site presented constraints in terms of what type of build would best utilise the site, so a Paxton design was proposed, using the design’s crescent shape to make best use of the available space. The two parallel arcs of the Paxton design are connected by a central corridor which ensures that each classroom is linked to external space and the reception outdoor areas are kept separate from older children.

Maintaining high standards

Susannah Hunt, deputy head teacher, was delighted with how engaged and informed pupils were with the build and were encouraged by the Sunesis team to bring pupils over to witness the site’s transformation during the build and hear about the work being done.

The school has, according to its May 2016 Ofsted report, maintained a good quality of teaching and, during the East site’s construction, there was no distraction among staff regarding their ‘prime responsibilities’. St Andrew’s C of E Lower School has maintained the standards of teaching upon which it has built its reputation and is now able to extend this offering to a larger number of children in the local area.

Creative design solutions

The teachers have been particularly impressed with the design features which have meant that the school site has been able to be used to its full potential. The ‘all-weather field’ has integrated drainage which has meant that children are able to use the field all year round – a big plus for both staff and pupils alike.

The ‘little touches’ are what have made the school really impressive, according to Susannah – from the underfloor heating and skylights to innovative storage solutions – the school’s design has meant that the school’s running has been smooth and efficient.

“The new building has certainly been a big factor in the rise in pupil applications at the school. A significant number of parents are applying because of the new building and we’re delighted that it has been so well received by the community.” Susannah Hunt, assistant head teacher and head of East site.

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