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Temporary classroom block could ease school’s growing demand for pupil places

Lliswerry High School proposed classroom block (Pic: Newport Norse via the Newport City Council planning portal - image was included in a report uploaded in planning application)

FOUR new classrooms are being installed at a Newport secondary school in anticipation of “increased demand” for pupil places.

More than 100 extra children could need a place at Lliswerry High School in three years’ time, according to a report by the city council’s arms-length property service Newport Norse.

Some 1,103 pupils are currently enrolled at the school, which has a capacity of 1,217 places – but demand is expected to rise to as many as 1,330 places over the next three years.

Lliswerry High School, pictured in September 2023 (Pic: Google)

Newport Norse has now applied for planning permission to bring a “demountable four-classroom unit” to Lliswerry High, which will accommodate the extra pupils.

The unit is “intended as a temporary provision” that will “provide additional places in the short-term”, allowing the council and school decision-makers time to assess longer-term demand for pupil places.

If planning permission is granted, the new unit will be transferred to Lliswerry from Bassaleg School, where it was previously used for temporary classrooms.

While any increase in demand for places is expected to be gradual over the next three years, moving the four-classroom unit to Lliswerry now will avoid “annual inconvenience” by adding a smaller unit each year, Newport Norse said.

Unused classrooms in the new unit “can be used flexibly by the school” until they are required for teaching.

Any impact on the school site in Lliswerry would be “minimal” and “does not result in [the] loss of useful grassed sports pitches, hard play area or large amounts of staff car parking”, according to the report.

Newport Norse added that the “additional pupil places provided will ensure that local children have access to a secondary school place in their locality, rather than another school in the city that has spare capacity, ensuring that the pupils remain with their current cohort and minimising traffic movement and air pollution”.

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The planning application is currently out for consultation, and can be viewed on the Newport City Council website under reference 24/0415.