Ambitions Academies Trust, Proposal to make a significant change to an open academy
This proposal is published in compliance with the Department for Education ‘Making significant changes to an open academy and closure by mutual agreement, Departmental guidance for all types of academy trust’ November 2019.
- Increase the size of Longspee Academy by up to 59 places (5 at the Learoyd Road site and up to 54 at a new satellite base); and
- Change the age range of the school from Year 1 to Year 9 to Reception to Year 11
Academy Trust and school details
The proposer is Ambitions Academy Trust.
General correspondence should be electronic only, addressed to: [email protected] Consultation responses should be sent either electronically to this email address, or posted to: Ambitions Academy Trust Office, Manorside Academy, Evering Avenue, Poole, BH12 4JG.
This proposal relates to Longspee School, Learoyd Road, Nuffield Industrial Estate, Poole, BH17 8PJ.
Implementation date and proposal
It is proposed that the number of places provided by Longspee Academy will increase during the calendar year 2021. The school will increase from 59 places to up to 118 places as follows:
- An additional 5 permanent Primary phase places at Longspee Academy, Learoyd Road, Poole BH17 8PJ.
- The addition of a satellite provision of up to 54 places in the Bournemouth Learning Centre (BLC), Ensbury Avenue Avenue, Bournemouth, BH10 4HG. The BLC will cease to operate its current functions and the new Longspee satellite will use the whole BLC building. The satellite will be permanent provision.
The satellite will offer provision for Secondary phase pupils who have a diagnosis of SEMH / ASC / complex needs. The provision for pupils attending Longspee Academy at Learoyd Road site remains unchanged.
The age range for Longspee Academy will change from the current range of Year 1 to Year 9 (age 5 to 14) to Reception to Year 11 (age 4 to age 16).
Objections and comments
Objections and comments regarding this proposal should be sent via email to: [email protected] All responses must be received by 23:59 Thursday 15 of October 2020.
Longspee Academy currently provides 59 places for children who have Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, from its Learoyd Road site and from Longspee Ensbury Park Satellite.
If the proposal in this document for an expansion at the Learoyd Road site and the satellite at the BLC is agreed, the school will have a total of up to 118 places on 3 sites.
It is proposed to carry out the following capital works:
Bournemouth Learning Centre:
The Bournemouth Learning Centre was formally a school. Capital will be used to return the current office spaces back to classrooms. There will be further internal configuration to provide a suitably broad and balanced curriculum offer involving the provision of an IT suite, science lab, art/design room, food technology classroom, music room, a library and therapeutic spaces to be able to deliver speech and language, occupational and mental health therapy as required.
Work will be undertaken to ensure sufficient and appropriate outside space for the pupils with new fencing which clearly demarcates the school from public spaces to provide the appropriate levels of security and safeguarding. This will prevent people entering the site other than through the main school Reception area.
Work will be undertaken in the car park to ensure a clear entry and exit onto the site and prevent congestion on the public road.
Longspee Academy Learoyd Road:
Capital will be used for the internal remodelling of space in order to provide an additional classroom and other spaces suitable for children with social, emotional and mental health / ASC needs. There is the need to create a new toilet, break out space and office for additional staff. The current library in the school will be remodelled to provide the additional classroom. Therefore, a modular building will be positioned within the current school boundary to provide a new library, meeting room and space for additional therapeutic support the additional children attending the school may need. A remodelling of the security fence will take place to incorporate the modular building within the secure area.
The additional places will be filled through the usual route for provision of SEND places at Longspee.
The proposals will be implemented by Ambitions Academy Trust. The implementation of this proposal is subject to current COVID-19 restrictions.
Longspee Academy at Learoyd Road would remain operational throughout the adaptations needed to add the additional 5 places on site and the works needed for the proposed satellite places. No additional site purchase is required.
The key objective of this proposal is to support Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council in its statutory duty to provide sufficient school places.
The number of children and young people assessed as requiring a place at a specialist education provision in the BCP area has increased in recent years. Local provision to meet these needs is of high quality, but capacity has not been expanded sufficiently to meet this additional demand.
In partnership with the BCP community of schools, BCP Council has developed a range of proposals to increase capacity and create new provision to meet the needs of these pupils. This will be achieved by creating new ‘satellite’ provision that is located in mainstream schools but operated by local special schools, expanding existing specialist provision and creating resource bases in mainstream schools to provide for pupils with additional needs.
Through ensuring additional appropriate provision is available to meet needs closer to where children and young people live there will be a reduction in the distances travelled to get to school and an increase in the numbers being educated within their own communities.
The additional provisions across BCP will allow for a graduated response to need whilst creating capacity within the system and greater choice for parents/carers.
Impact on other Educational Institutions within the area
There is expected to be minimal impact on other schools in the area.
Statutory requirements to consult in relation to this proposal are being complied with as per the Department for Education ‘Making significant changes to an open academy and closure by mutual agreement, Departmental guidance for all types of academy trust’ November 2019.
A list of stakeholders who have been sent consultation packs inviting them to express their views can be found in Appendix 1.
The age range of Longspee Academy is currently 5 to 14 years of age. The school proposes to extend its age range to 4 to 16.
Need or demand for additional places
Schools and their communities and families want children and young people with special education needs and disabilities (SEND) to have bright futures, fulfilled lives, and to be connected to their local communities. BCP’s draft SEND strategy sets out this aim and the priorities which will enable it to be realised. The strategic priorities within it most directly relevant to sufficiency are:
- Clear expectations about effective mainstream inclusion
- The development of more local provision, particularly for children and young people with autism (ASD), social, emotional and mental health difficulties (SEMH) and physical disabilities (PD)
- Develop a wider range of pathways into employment for young people, including supported internships.
- Improve pathways and provision for post-16 to reduce reliance on the independent sector
In the last 3 years for example percentage of the 0-25 age population with an EHCP maintained by the authority increased from 2%, to 2.3% and 2.5%, this compares with 1.7% nationally. The chart below shows actual and forecasted EHCP numbers. It is important to note that this illustrates what could happen if no action is taken. It shows that numbers could increase in all phases except pre-school, at a broadly similar number each year, but with the greater proportional increase from 2020 to 2029 post 16 and post 19 (primary is a 42% increase, secondary 40% increase, post 16 a 78% increase and at post 19 the number more than doubles).
Chart 1: EHCPs maintained by BCP actuals 2013 – 2019 and forecast 2020-2029
If there are insufficient special school places then then the Local Authority must rely on expensive out of area or independent provision. The revenue budget that funds special placements is under significant pressure partly as a result of this. Expanding special places within the area will better meet the need of local children whilst providing more cost-effective placement spend that could help support more children with SEND.
The table below shows how the proportion of placement by provider type within the BCP area would need to change if the area were to move to the National average. To bring the area closer in line with National, it is therefore very clear that the LA should increase both placements within mainstream schools, and special schools, where it is appropriate to do so.
|Provision type||BCP EHCP placements
|Notional placement based on national average|
|INMSS||439 (18%)||154 (6%)|
|Special schools||738 (31%)||949 (39%)|
|Mainstream||1232 (51%)||1306 (54%)|
Table 1: EHCP placements by provision type and reprofiling to National
To create these additional places BCP Council is proposing a programme of expansion projects as set out in Table 2 below, over the next two years. To help meet longer term needs, the council is currently exploring other options in addition to these.
Table 2: Additional SEND places proposed for 2020/21 and 2021/22
|Project ref||Project title and nature of works||Primary need||Key Stage/age||Place numbers created (approximate)|
|1||Special school satellite at Somerford
Large scale satellite including remodelling and extensions
|ASC tbc||all KSs tbc||36-42 tbc|
|2||Springwood (Linwood) satellite at Heathlands
Expansion of existing campus into additional classroom space
|3||AAT satellite adjacent to Kingsleigh
Uncoupling of services from the site
|4||Manorside (AAT) Resource Base
Works to existing space to enable use as Resource Base
|5||Broadstone Resource Base
Installation of a modular build
|6||Winchelsea satellite at Old Town
Works to 5 classrooms to enable appropriate adjacencies
|7||Winchelsea satellite at Magna
Re-purposing of a unit currently not used
|8||Increase places at Longspee special school
|9||Longspee satellite at Bournemouth Learning Centre (BLC)
Conversion back into a school
|SEMH/ASC||KS3/4||40 – 54|
|168 – 190 additional places|
How the school will manage the new satellite
Longspee Academy is part of the Ambitions Academies Trust (AAT). It is an Outstanding school rated by Ofsted in February 2020 with an experienced and stable leadership team. A new leadership team will be appointed to lead and manage the new satellite who will work closely with the leadership team at the Learoyd school campus to ensure continuity of the excellence in educational provision and care as the children progress from KS2 to KS3/4. The new site will have the same governing body and operate under the same policies as the current Longspee provision modified as appropriate for the older age range.
How the school will manage pupil travel to and from the new satellite
All pupils attending the new Longspee satellite will have an EHCP. There is no automatic entitlement to free school transport however the students may be entitled to help with travel to and from the new provision. Applications for travel assistance will be considered by BCP according to criteria set out in the local authorities’ transport policies. Older pupils may be encouraged to travel independently to the site following the provision of appropriate travel training to ensure health and safety and safeguarding duties are met.
Work will be undertaken in the car park to ensure a clear entry and exit onto the site and prevent congestion on the public road.
How the school will manage its relationship with the community
The school will work cooperatively with BCP and the local community to minimise any potential disruption. The school will take feedback from the consultation process and modify / refine plans where necessary to reassure local residents that any concerns raised have been taken seriously and actioned as appropriate.
Deadline and how you can respond to the consultation
The deadline for responses is 23.59 on Thursday 15 October 2020.
Copies of this proposal can be obtained from:
Direct link to survey: https://wh1.snapsurveys.com/s.asp?k=159169666456
The consultation runs from Friday 4 September to 23.59 on Thursday 15 October 2020. During this time, any person may object to or make comments on the proposal by using the online survey which is linked to above:
If you have trouble accessing the online survey, you can request a response form to be emailed to you Please contact: [email protected] for support with this.
Consultation Forms and Responses
Consultation Documents and Response Forms have been made widely available to:
- Families of all pupils of Longspee Academy
- The Governing Body of Longspee Academy
- School staff at Longspee Academy
- Head Teachers across the BCP Council area including those of Independent and Non-Maintained Special Schools
- Local Member of Parliament
- Trade Union representatives
- Local Children’s Centres
- Residents in the Local Area
The consultation response survey is available on the BCP Council website as well as the Ambitions Academy Trust website. A press notice in the Bournemouth Echo advised how the consultation response survey could be obtained.