400 students found places at expanded Trinity Academy

councillors have found a solution to finding places for 400 students when St Catherine’s Catholic High School, Halifax, closes in 2013.

Leeds Catholic Diocese has indictated its intention to withdraw support for secondary Catholic education in Calderdale and to close the school.

That would mean the loss of some 600 secondary school places in north Halifax.

So Calderdale’s Cabinet considered two options:

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Either secure the land and buildings on the current St Catherine’s site and create a sponsored academy there or extend the Trinity Academy building, currently under construction, so as to accommodate an additional 400 students.

Cabinet voted for the second option. The money to pay for the extension will come from a £7.25 million Department for Education grant for secondary provision in Calderdale.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Lifelong Learning, Coun Ashley Evans, said:

“A larger Trinity Academy is the most sensible and cost effective way of ensuring that there are good school places within easy travelling distance for the young people of north Halifax.

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“The developments taking place at Trinity are really exciting and it makes sense to extend the building there to provide additional school places.”

Lead Member for Children’s Services, Coun Megan Swift, said:

“The closure of St Catherine’s High will result in the need for hundreds of additional school places in north Halifax.

“A larger Trinity Academy seems is the best way to address the problem.”

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Jonathan Greener, Dean of Wakefield, speaking on behalf of the sponsors of Trinity academy, said:

“The Sponsors of Trinity Academy are delighted that Calderdale Council are working with us to provide transformational education for the children of north Halifax.

“There is more to be done to ensure we have the right plans in place, but we are working together to find the right way forward.

“Our marvellous new building is progressing rapidly, and we would be very pleased to make these facilities available to as many students from the area as possible.”