MPs Tom Brake and Paul Burstow suggest Sutton Hospital could be the best location for new secondary school
Sutton’s MPs have taken their fight for a new secondary school to the Department for Education and have suggested Sutton Hospital could be the best place for it.
Paul Burstow and Tom Brake met with schools minister David laws yesterday and pressed him for the capital funding to provide an extra 4,000 high school places desperately needed in Sutton by 2019.
MPs Paul Burstow and Tom Brake
A new secondary school is urgently needed by the autumn of 2017 and both MPs told Mr Laws the the Sutton Hospital site would be the best location for the school.
The demand is driven by increasing numbers of children needing primary school places in Belmont and South Sutton.
Sutton Council is pressing ahead with plans for an extra 1,500 places added to existing secondary schools between 2015-17.
The council has already approached the Partnership of Sutton Secondary Schools asking for 120 extra places for pupils at five schools in 2015 when the current primary school place crisis hits the secondary sector.
This includes 15 places at two grammar schools – Nonsuch High School for Girls and Sutton Grammar School for Boys.
Mr Brake said Sutton's primary schools were groaning under the weight of extra pupils.
He said: "These pupils will soon need a secondary school place. It was clear that David Laws understood Sutton is facing real pressures.
"This must feed through into hard cash to address these basic needs."
Mr Burstow said the meeting was encouraging and added: "A new high school on the Sutton Hospital site offers an exciting opportunity, especially the potential tie in with council's idea of developing a life science cluster based around the Institute for Cancer Research and Royal Marsden."
Plans to transfer services from the Sutton Hospital site to Epsom and St Helier hospitals was recently given the green light by the trust board and Sutton Clinical Commissioning Group.
It was always expected that the trust would move out of Sutton Hospital as part of the £219m redevelopment of St Helier Hospital but there have been delays due to uncertainties caused by the Better Services Better Value healthcare review which previously planned to downgrade St Helier.
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