New sixth-form centre meets rise in demand
A NEW £2.2 million sixth form centre at Gordano School in Portishead – needed to cope with an increase in students staying on to study – has opened.
The new centre will house the school's 460 sixth-form students.
It was funded by a £2 million grant from the Young People's Learning Agency Demographic Growth Fund.
Gordano, which converted to academy in July 2011 and has 1,884 students on its roll, was one of a number of schools to secure a slice of £30 million to improve its post-16 education capacity.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
A further £200,000 was earmarked by the school towards the costs of fitting out the building.
Work started on the new block, which can accommodate up to around 500 students, in December.
The centre has a lecture hall with retractable seating which is also used as a drama studio and dance suite for younger students.
It has become a rehearsal and performance space for the school's orchestra which has grown too big to practise in the music classrooms. On the ground floor there is office space and a sixth-form study centre which is fitted with learning booths so students can work without being disturbed.
The study centre also has Apple computers, PCs and laptop ports as well as study tables and a seating area where students can meet and chat.
On the first floor there are four large classrooms with interactive whiteboards and seating described as "learning pods".
The old sixth-form building, which has four classrooms and an IT room on the first floor, houses a common room and social space with a Costa Coffee bar.
Previously students needing private study space were forced to use the common room and the library.
A corridor within the sixth-form block was also converted to provide additional learning space.
The sixth-form is headed up this year by Jeanne Fairs who joined Gordano from Clevedon Community School.
Gordano head teacher Gary Lewis said: "The bigger classrooms were designed to help us future proof the building and we have been careful to design and build a centre which can be flexible.
"We spent a lot of time to ensure the building looks good and I am sure it will be an asset to Portishead.
"Although Gordano converted to an academy last year we have continued to work closely with North Somerset Council on the project.
"I am so pleased that we now have a building which does what we need it to do
"We have always felt very proud of our sixth form and its achievements, but not the building we do it in.
"I feel great pride that the students, staff and local community have the building they truly deserve."