GROUND was broken at West Coventry Academy today to signal the start of work which will see it transformed as part of the Government’s School Rebuilding Programme.
The spade was put in the ground by Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi ahead of the £38.4million complete rebuild which will include a brand new, state-of-the-art sports hall, also serving the local community.
The academy’s new buildings will be designed to reduce energy consumption and support the UK’s net zero by 2050 target.
West Coventry is one of the first 100 schools to be revamped under the £2billion ten-year scheme.
There will be 500 built in total and the government is currently consulting on how to prioritise which schools will be selected in the future.
Mr Zahawi said the programme would transform the lives of thousands of children over years to come.
“We are revolutionising the school estate to future proof both our children’s education and the environment, with new school buildings that are net zero in operation – leading the charge for more sustainable schools and supporting students and teachers to make a positive impact on the environment.”
“These rebuilds and refurbishments, with the first 100 projects backed by £2bn government funding, will create world-leading education facilities, from classrooms and science labs to sports halls and dining rooms.”
West Coventry Academy headteacher Ana Neofitou said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure to host the minister today – and it was great to be able to share our exciting plans with him and show him around the school.
“The minister was incredibly interested in what the students are doing and asked them some very interesting questions as we visited classrooms – particularly about lost education and how they are going to move forward now that school’s back to normal.
“He was thrilled to see the plans and said he was very pleased to be able to make the investment, which will make a huge difference for students and he wider community.”
The Department for Education will be showcasing work to make school sites more sustainable at COP26 in November.
Measures to be announced at COP will focus on the government championing climate education and skills, making it easier for schools and pupils to support local biodiversity and make a positive impact on the world around them.
The Department is also looking at how it can take school buildings a step further in lowering their carbon footprint, including research into construction and layout of school sites, the creation of more outdoor spaces within schools, and improvements to the way schools are powered.
COP26 will bring education and climate ministers together from across the world to set out the Government’s vision and encourage others to make commitments to sustainable education – making schools greener, but also equipping young people with knowledge about their environment and highlighting education and training opportunities in the green economy.