Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council has announced plans to invest in Pathways Special School. The report, due to be considered by Cabinet on Tuesday 31st October, proposes that the Pathways Special School is relocated to another, more central site which can offer expanded and more appropriate provision to the pupils who use the school.

Head teacher Rachel Glover said: “Providing an appropriate education for pupils with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs is crucial. A new building with exciting new facilities that are designed around the needs of our young people will help our staff to ensure each child has the opportunity to flourish.”

Councillor Craig Hannaway, Cabinet Member for Children at Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, said: “We believe that every child matters and deserves the best start in life and we want all of our children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities to be an integral part of a welcoming local community. As a council, we are currently unable to meet the needs of all the children who need specialist support within the borough’s boundaries.

“Over 45 of our children with SEMH needs are currently educated out of the borough and we know that the numbers of children with needs such as these is increasing. By investing in new, fit for purpose facilities we can better meet young people’s needs and ensure that these children, and other local children, are educated centrally near their homes.

“It is well known that children’s education improves when the facilities are modern and appropriate. This decision, if approved by Cabinet, will allow a new fresh start for the school and its pupils.”

The report proposes that the school is relocated from Tennyson Avenue in Grangetown to a vacant site on Corporation Road in Redcar which was previously used for education purposes. The current building has limited capacity with poor access and a backlog of maintenance issues. The new school will be funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency through the Priority Schools Building Programme with a contribution from the council’s Capital Programme.

If agreed, a full consultation on the proposals will begin in early November with the families of current students, staff, partners and other relevant parties. The consultation will be published on the council’s website and there will be a four week period in which views, comments and objections can be made. In addition, the proposed development will also be subject to a formal application for Planning Consent.