PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL is consulting on a proposal to increase the number of places available at Portfield School in Haverfordwest, as part of the Council’s 21st Century Schools Programme (Sustainable Communities for Learning).
Portfield School provides education for pupils between three and 19 years of age who have statements of special educational needs.
It caters for pupils with a range of special educational needs, including severe learning difficulties, profound and multiple learning difficulties and autistic spectrum disorder, as well as various genetic disorders, physical and sensory impairments.
The school serves the whole of Pembrokeshire with some pupils coming from neighbouring local authorities. At present there are 168 pupils on the roll.
Steven Richards-Downes, Director of Education, said the Council places a great deal of importance on educating the most vulnerable learners in their local communities, so that they can access local services close to their home.
He said: “It is not just the increase in the number of learners that require specialist provision that are causing admission pressures, it is also the increase in the complexities of their needs which require additional staffing.
“Based on information from health visitors and demand in early years for specialist pre-school placements, it is predicted that the number of pupils with complex needs will continue to grow over the next five to ten years.”
It is therefore proposed to undertake the following improvements:
- To extend the existing Portfield upper school building in order to accommodate lower school pupils
- To utilise an adjacent building on the site, known as the ‘H Block’, for use by Portfield School as a post 16 centre. This will also be used as community space;
- An addition to an adjacent building, known as Holly House, in order to provide additional and full-time residential care places for Portfield School learners. This will increase the provision from a 6 bed unit to 9 beds. It is envisaged that this additional capacity will allow greater synergy with Portfield School, and will allow some learners to be accommodated on site.
You can give your views gives on the proposal at
Cllr Guy Woodham, Cabinet Member for Education and Lifelong Learning, urged all those interested in the future development of Portfield School to take part in the consultation.
“It’s really important that we hear from as many people as possible in this consultation, so please do participate and let us know your views ahead of the deadline,” he said.
The consultation runs until Friday 29th April 2022.