Construction of a new school for children with special needs in Sidcup has officially begun with the first wave of students expected in September this year.

Cleeve Meadow School was given the green light to be built by the council last September and just recently closed off a round of public consultations.

The new SEN school will be located within the grounds of Cleeve Park School in Bexley Lane and will be designed to provide specialist education to 120 students aged between 11 and 19 who have moderate learning difficulties.

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It's set to boast 12 teaching rooms, a therapeutic hub, an open plan library, a specialist music department, a performing arts centre and a full-sized artificial football pitch which is planned to also be available for public use outside of school hours.


Speaking at a launch event at the site yesterday, cabinet member for education, Cllr John Fuller said: "This new school will help us to realise our goal of educating Bexley children within Bexley wherever possibly we can.

"By careful forward planning each year we meet the demand for school places for our mainstream pupils but places within the borough for local children with different needs can be a challenge.

"The new Cleeve Meadow School will make a huge difference and seeing work get underway is a brilliant way to start the new year."

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The school, which will be managed by The Kemnal Academies Trust, is being funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency along with the council which has contributed £2 million to its development.

Last year, News Shopper reported there was a need for a new SEN school as council documents showed that 267 SEN pupils had been placed outside the borough with demands already increasing.

Works on the new school are expected to be completed in the spring.