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New special school in Gloucestershire for children and young people with Social Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) needs


At the meeting of Gloucestershire County Council’s cabinet on 9 October 2019 approval was given to commit £7.5m to establish a new 75 place special school for children and young people with Social Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) needs.

The need for the new school is part of Gloucestershire’s draft SEND Commissioning Strategy 2019-2024.

The location of the new school is not yet confirmed but it is proposed that this will be in Brockworth, making it easily accessible from Gloucester and Cheltenham where the greatest level of need has been identified. It will increase the number of special school places available within the county; allowing children’s needs to be met locally, reducing the number of out of county and independent school placements and bringing about anticipated savings in the region of £2m per year.

The cabinet approval enables officers to launch the free school presumption competition process to identify the academy sponsor that will run the school and it is anticipated that the final decision will be made by the Regional Schools Commissioner in spring 2020.

Full details of the process, including how approved sponsor trusts can apply, along with the full specification document can be accessed via both the DfE and the GCC websites.

Department for Education:

Gloucestershire County Council:

The competition launches on 21 October 2019 and the deadline for applications is noon 6th December 2019.

Nathan Roe, Education Planning Manager, Gloucestershire County Council.

01452 427262

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