Park Lane special school opens its doors to more students
29 June 2022
Park Lane Special School is now welcoming an additional 40 pupils with SEND thanks to the construction of new classroom space.
Back in 2019, Cheshire East Council approved proposals to expand the Macclesfield school from 86 pupils to 126 as part of a three-year plan to increase provision for children and young people with special educational needs or disabilities.
Now, following a major £4million expansion project, nine new classrooms have been built plus a sixth form room which are providing first class education provision to the extra pupils. The new classrooms are located in a detached two storey building to the front of the school which opened immediately after the February half term.
Volunteers from Cheshire East Council, Manchester and Cheshire Construction, Halliday Meecham Architects as well as pupils and governors helped to build a new sensory garden which includes fencing, raised beds, a water feature and pavilion building.
Mark Bayley, head of service for education infrastructure and outcomes at Cheshire East Council, said: “The extension of Park Lane Special School is a welcome addition to our SEND offer in Cheshire East. It will help us to meet the growing demand for specialist school places in the borough.
“In the last three years we have seen a 63 per cent increase in the number of children in the borough with an Education Health and Care Plan because they have a special educational need or disability including autism. While it’s best for many of these pupils to learn in mainstream provision, for some of our children and young people the specialist support offered by a school like Park Lane remains the best option.
“Meeting the needs of children and young people with SEND , and their parents and carers, means making sure we have sufficient school places available for everyone who needs one. And with these modern, high-quality classrooms we have significantly added to that provision this year.
“The new places at the school also mean we have reduced the number of pupils who are having to travel outside the borough to access a special school place.”
Cheshire East Council is also currently working to expand the number of places at Springfield School in both Crewe and a satellite site in Handforth
The expansion of Park Lane has been funded via Cheshire East Council’s capital programme as well as by Section 106 developer contributions.
For more information on school expansion programmes visit Assessing our local SEN Sufficiency and our provision plans (cheshireeast.gov.uk) and School organisation (cheshireeast.gov.uk)