Plans for Swan School temporary site are approved

The plans for The Swan School’s temporary home in North Oxford have been approved by Oxford City Council in the last couple of hours.

The local authority’s West Area Planning Committee has just unanimously given the go-ahead to plans for temporary accommodation to be built on land at The Cherwell School South Site in Marston Ferry Road.

It is intended that the site will be used for the academic year 2019-2020 while The Swan’s brand new home at Marston is built, but the planning application allows for the temporary accommodation to be used for a second year in the event of delays to construction of the permanent school.

Getting planning permission for the temporary site moves us significantly towards the Department of Education being able to confirm that the school will definitely open in September.

This formal confirmation will come when the DfE signs a document known as a Funding Arrangement. No date has been set for the signing of the Funding Arrangement.

On 1st March, parents and carers of secondary Year 6 pupils around the country will find out which secondary school their child has been allocated for 2019-2020.

In the case of The Swan School, children will be allocated a place at an existing school and will also find out if they have a place at The Swan.

This website has a graphic explaining how the process works at this point in terms of accepting and declining places, or continuing to try to get a child into The Swan School. It can be found here.

Kay Wood, the Headteacher of The Swan School, said: “It is great news for parents and the whole city that this badly-needed school is a giant stride closer to being able to open in September.

“It is very reassuring for parents who receive offers of places at The Swan next Friday. Where to send your child to secondary school is a huge decision, and this council vote makes that decision more straightforward.

“I can’t wait to meet our founding cohort of students, and this planning decisions brings that moment much closer.

“We are over one of the final hurdles and we can continue with our concrete planning to make sure our school is exceptional from the start.

“I am looking forward to working with the local community and stakeholders to ensure that the school is a success.”