Derrymount Special School: Proposal for change in number of pupils

Closes 12 Dec 2022

Opened 14 Nov 2022

Overview

From January 2023, the expansion of the Derrymount Upper School site in Daybrook will allow the school to offer an additional 20 places in a two-classroom modular-build extension, plus associated external and car park works.

As Derrymount is a local authority maintained special school, NCC is required to undertake a statutory consultation since the roll of this special school is planned to increase by +10%.

Nottinghamshire’s Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Place Planning Strategy (2021-2026) states that:

  • Despite the planned actions to develop locality working, and the ongoing commitment to inclusion, the analysis of the continuing demand for specialist educational placements … will require the County Council to increase provision over the next five years.
  • This pressure for additional placements exists now… as an additional 275-490 places in specialist provision (are needed) by September 2026, with up to 239 places required for September 2023.
  • Additional places (will) … be focused on the … Gedling district to meet … current growth in demand.
  • … Most of the additional placements (will be) … located … on existing mainstream school sites … to allow opportunities for integration and access to the National Curriculum.  This is especially important for the cohort of children and young people with social, emotional, and mental health needs.

Therefore, NCC is proposing the expansion of a current Special School,  Derrymount, where the Upper School site does allow enlargement, permitting 20 extra places to be available for local young people mainly with an Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC).

Pupil numbers:

The current capacity of Derrymount Special school is 84. Following this proposed expansion, the capacity of Derrymount will rise to 104.

Growth:

All 20 additional places will be allocated during the Spring Term 2022/23.

Admissions:

The allocation of additional places at this Special School will continue to be managed by the Statutory Education Health & Care Assessment Team of NCC’s Integrated Children's Disability Service (ICDS). Places will be allocated to those children with Education and Health Care Plans (EHCPs) specifying specialist provision which can be offered at Derrymount.

Please note, there will be no pupils displaced by this proposal.

The proposed increase in roll at Derrymount will:

  • increase the school’s capacity to place pupils with SEND who move into the area and who might be without a special school place. 
  • provide an opportunity to employ more specialist teachers in the field of Attachment Disorder, Trauma-related issues and Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
  • create an opportunity to host more teacher training places at the school, thus increasing the special needs experience of teachers for the future. 
  • reduce the need for pupils with SEND to be placed at a greater distance from where they live, or to move to independent provision.
  • improve the outcomes for pupils with SEND, as this school differs from other special schools in that it offers a wide range of qualifications including GCSEs. 
  • increase the opportunity to place pupils with a history of school refusal due to anxiety, allowing them to re-engage with education.
  • increase the school’s  capacity to meet the needs of its most ‘difficult to place’ students.
  • increase the capacity of local special schools.
  • enhance opportunities to build partnerships with local mainstream schools

The Local Authority is confident that the school site will be easily accessible to existing and new pupils using current means of transport.

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