‘Turn part of the old school into a community centre’

Published on: 04 Feb 2015

The former Mangotsfield Primary SchoolThe former Downend Day centre

A CALL has been made for part of the former Mangotsfield Primary School in Richmond Road to be retained for community use.

The old school has for some years been a base for pupils from South Gloucestershire who are unable to attend mainstream education.

But its facilities are said to be not fit for purpose so councillors have decided to move the Education Other than at School service (SGEOTAS) to the former Downend Day Centre.

A report said this would free the Mangotsfield site and two others for disposal, with any proceeds being put towards the £2.6 million cost of converting the day centre.

Rodway councillor Michael Bell said: “I would like to see part of the old school turned into a community centre. Mangotsfield village does not have any community meeting facilities.”

The Richmond Road site houses two parts of SGEOTAS – The Junction, which has up to 40 places for children of all ages who have medical or mental health needs, and the 6day+ provision, for up to 10 secondary students from the sixth day of exclusion from school.

A pupil referral unit for up to 12 primary aged pupils is based temporarily in the infant block of the former Staple Hill Primary and the Severnside secondary pupil referral unit for up to 30 students is at Charborough Road.

The report to councillors last month said it was difficult to improve South Gloucestershire’s alternative education provision while it was spread across three sites which were all in poor condition.

Officers said converting the former day centre was the quickest and cheapest option. Providing a new build for the whole service at Richmond Road would cost £4.9 million and would be disruptive, they said. New builds at Charborough Road or at The Grange School site were also considered but ruled out as too costly.

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