PLANS to extend a temporary school on a gridlocked town centre street - in order to house hundreds of children while its significantly delayed £25m site is being built - have been submitted to the council.
Trinity Academy St Edward’s is currently situated in the former Barnsley College building - Eastgate House - in the town centre.
It currently holds both year seven and year eight pupils - and plans submitted to the council indicate that it will hold a third year group from September.
According to a report, it will open its main site on Broadway, Kingstone, in September 2024 and have 90 staff, catering for youngsters aged between 11 and 16.
The proposed school - which has faced considerable delays since the plan was revealed three years ago - consists of a main, rectangular, multi-storey teaching block with an adjacent square sports hall, and a 140-space car park.
The plans for the new site were approved in October due to the lack of school places in Barnsley - with its current home described as ‘not a great site’.
Despite this, planning permission is being sought to extend the school even further.
A planning report states: “Trinity Multi-Academy Trust operates several school premises throughout the Yorkshire region.
“St Edward’s is currently operating from a temporary site on Eastgate in the centre of Barnsley, whilst a new purpose-built academy is being constructed on the outskirts of the town, due for completion in 2024.
“The Eastgate site is due to receive an increase in pupils for the 2023 academic year, so a new three-storey temporary modular teaching building is proposed on a site adjacent to their Eastgate site.
“The temporary building is to be removed once the new school building is complete and the site returned to its existing use as a car park.”
If the new plans are approved, it would leave the surrounding car parks with almost 80 fewer spaces.
“The construction of the new buildings will result in a net loss of 24 public parking spaces, to be reinstated when the building is removed,” the report added.
“A further 49 school parking spaces will be lost from the car park to the north, which will become a play area.
“There will be no other alterations to the hard standing areas to facilitate easy future reinstatement of the car park.”
Parents and carers parking their cars has been a hot topic for local businesses and residents at peak pick-up and drop-off times - but the school promised to address the situation.
“Staff will be on duty from 8am every morning,” the report added.
“Senior leaders will be present at the front of the building and staff will position themselves in the County Way car park.
“Staff will also be positioned on Eastgate to monitor the safety of pedestrians and to monitor dropping off.
“When dropping children off, or picking them up, parents are requested not to park indiscriminately on the highway, and where possible are encouraged to encourage their children to walk to school.
“They should not be parked on double yellow lines on Eastgate.”
The principal of the school, Mark Allen, told the Chronicle that the developments are a ‘great opportunity’ for the borough.
He added: “This is a really exciting time for the academy as we move towards relocating to the new school in 2024.
“In the next academic year, we will continue at Eastgate with new classroom blocks to both extend the curriculum offer to our existing students and also cater for the third year group.
“During 2024 we will move to the new school at Keresforth Close, which again will further extend our curriculum offer and cater for the remaining year groups to start at Trinity Academy St Edward’s.
“I am sure you would agree with me that these developments provide a great opportunity to positively support the breadth and depth of education in the borough whilst attracting great inward investment to meet the education demands.”