A new extended secondary school for Arlesey, Stotfold and the Fairfield Park estate could be the answer to projected shortage of school places says a local trust.
The Bedfordshire East Multi Academy Trust, which currently runs the Langford, Gravenhurst, Gothic Mede, Robert Bloomfield, Etonbury and Samuel Whitbread academies, has submitted a proposal to open a new co-educational, 9 -16 extended secondary school called the Pix Brook Academy.
The new academy will provide much-needed school places for families living in and around the towns of Arlesey and Stotfold and the Fairfield Park estate. Student numbers in the Arlesey, Stotfold and Fairfield areas of Central Bedfordshire are due to increase significantly in the next few years.
Arlesey and Stotfold have seen considerable growth since 2001. By 2011, the parishes of Stotfold and Arlesey combined grew by around 70% in population terms, with further growth in adjacentHenlow parish of nearly 50%.
The continued build of existing planning permissions and commitments at Stotfold and Arlesey will see this growth continue up to 2021 and beyond.
Even at the most conservative estimates local school capacity will be under serious pressure by 2019, with this situation worsening significantly over the following few years.
A school spokesman said: “To ensure continuity and certainty for students and parents the Trust would like to develop a similar school to the Etonbury Academy to deal with this shortage in places.
“We have therefore submitted an application to open the new Pix Brook Academy and the public consultation has now begun.
Alex Prior, Principal of Etonbury Academy, which will also become an extended secondary school in September 2016 and will work closely with the new academy said: “Etonbury Academy wholeheartedly supports the Pix Brook Academy proposals and is fully committed to supporting the development of the new school to ensure local students can be educated in their community now and for generations to come.”
A website for the public consultation has been launched and can be viewed at this address: www.pixbrookacademy.co.uk.
The website contains further details about the proposal and there is a registration and contact form so that people can give their views.
Social media accounts have also been set up at