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Go-ahead for school

PUBLISHED: 15:20 25 June 2008 | UPDATED: 14:36 07 July 2010

A £5million project to build a state of the art new sixth form centre in mid-Norfolk has finally been given the green light.

Reepham High School, which first put forward plans to extend its education to a sixth form more than 10 years ago, is now on track to open its doors to up to 225 sixth form students in September 2009.

A £5million project to build a state of the art new sixth form centre in mid-Norfolk has finally been given the green light.

Reepham High School, which first put forward plans to extend its education to a sixth form more than 10 years ago, is now on track to open its doors to up to 225 sixth form students in September 2009.

Planning Permission was finally granted late last week and builders Kier have already been appointed to carry out the works.

Chris Hassell, head teacher at Reepham High, said he was delighted at getting the green light and that it would be a dream realised come the start of the new school year next year.

“For me it is a dream realised,” he said. “It will be a massive benefit to the children in this school for years to come.

“It has been a long hard journey.”

A bid for a sixth form was turned down in 1997 but this time, since many education successes at the school, its leaders have got through the Learning and Skills Council, Norfolk County Council education bosses, planners and won £5.26million of funding to cover the cost of the scheme.

They also had to do a land deal in order to get the space to build it on.

Now John Randall, who is the school's head of maths, has been appointed head of the sixth form and it is now full steam ahead to get the building built and open by September 2009, Mr Hassell said.

It is hoped it will offer everything from the new International Baccelaureate to A- levels and vocational qualifications including new diplomas.

The new building is to be on the school's playing field, thanks to a land swap arranged by Norfolk County Council - it has bought an agricultural field to create a new playing field and part of the present playing field, which falls at a gradient, will be given back to farming.

The new playing field will be big enough to sport a 400m running track and be large enough to hold a full size cricket pitch.

The new building will be strong on creative media with hi-tech sound rooms, an animation suite, a learning resources centre with 60 computers, and ICT suite with 30 computers, a lecture hall and flexible teaching spaces.

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