Plans for Wiltshire’s new Special Educational Needs and Disabilities(SEND) school progressed one step further this week with the choice of a new name – Silverwood School. The school communities at Larkrise, Rowdeford and St. Nicholas were consulted and Silverwood School was chosen from a shortlist of eight by the governors.
On 1 September these three school sites came together as one school with the working name of North Wiltshire School. Now pupils across all three sites will be pupils of Silverwood School with each site referred to as the Trowbridge campus, Rowde campus or Chippenham campus respectively.
The school community can now move on to the next important job – choosing a logo for the newly named school.
Sean McKeown Interim Executive Headteacher said, “I am absolutely delighted with the school communities’ choice, Silverwood School. I am thoroughly looking forward to the next stage, when the logo design and name will combine to represent all that Silverwood has to offer: a centre of excellence where all children and young people will thrive, flourish and achieve the most amazing outcomes. I am incredibly proud to be leading Silverwood School on the next phase of its exciting journey.”
A new school, costing £33m will be built on the Rowde site. It will provide places for pupils with SEND aged from early years to post-16. by September 2023. A full planning application will be submitted in spring of next year and will be shaped by consultations with local people, families and school staff.
It is hoped the new school building will offer plenty of space to move around while maximising natural daylight and ventilation to create an airy feel. In addition, there will be a hydrotherapy pool and outdoor learning provision
Main construction works are expected to start in Summer 2021 and to be complete for Sept 2023. Wiltshire Councillor, Jane Davies, told marlborough.news, “As the Wiltshire Councillor with responsibility for SEND since 2017, I have been closely involved with plans to increase both the number of special school places within Wiltshire, and the quality of the provision available, both in special and mainstream schools. We have secured £12 million funding for a new school in Salisbury, and £33 million for Silverwood School.
We have been working closely with pupils, parents, carers, governors and staff to co-produce all aspects of the new school build. We have held a series of well attended co-production workshops looking at key areas like building design, transport, ecology, environment, play and outdoor learning, and linking the three school campuses to our local communities. These will continue in the new year as we really want everyone to feel a real sense of ownership of the new building. The naming of Silverwood is a lovely example of this community involvement. Well done to all the people involved!
The new build offers wonderful opportunities to bring health and care specialists into the heart of the education environment, fulfilling the three aspects of Education Health Care plans.
Wiltshire is not just ambitious for those children with need to attend a special school, we want every child and young person to be able to access the support they need to thrive. Therefore, Silverwood will be a centre of excellence with in-reach and out-reach to support mainstream schools creating a system of SEND excellence and true inclusion.”
Cllr Laura Mayes, Cabinet member for Children, Education and Skills said: “Well done everyone and what a brilliant name for this school. I am so proud of how the school communities from across the three campuses have come together to decide this new name and I’m sure this is a demonstration of how we will move forward with learning and striving to provide the very best education for all our pupils.”
Cllr Jo Waltham, Marlborough Town Council, said, “Well done to pupils, staff and governors for choosing their new school name – Silverwood School. I hope the pupils of Silverwood School thrive in their magical forest school (Minecraft reference).
I look forward to seeing the plans for this new school in due course and to see how the super school manages to keep a small school feel. I am glad the three campuses are remaining as it is important to connect all children with their local communities as far as possible. I’m also very interested to hear further details on how this new super school is going to help and support mainstream resource bases across the county as in the original proposal.”