Writer of TV show Silent Witness will open £1.2m centre for special needs kids
A NEW £1.2 million building is helping a Notts academy cater for children with special educational needs.
The Learning and Inclusion Centre at George Spencer Academy in Stapleford has rooms specially designed for youngsters.
These include hygienic washrooms for the school's five students with physical disabilities.
Other students with conditions like dyslexia and autism also use the building, which has been designed to be bright and spacious inside to allow them more time alone for learning.
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Victoria Jones, director of inclusion at the academy, said : "Before we have had to use cramped classrooms for extra help for our students. This new building has made a huge difference to that.
"We have students with severe needs and those with other disorders – they all use this new building.
"We are also expecting an increase in students with special educational needs so this is an ideal time. We are very keen to be an inclusive school."
The building also has classrooms and meeting rooms for one-to-one tuition and discussions for children who need help and advice away from the school.
The money for the building came from the Department for Education's capital programme.
Well-known screenwriter and former George Spencer student Nigel McCrery – the man behind popular TV dramas like Silent Witness and New Tricks – will officially open the centre at 1pm on March 14.
He will talk to students about his career and how he has coped with dyslexia.
Mrs Jones added: "We are delighted to welcome Nigel into the school for this special day for us."
Gillian Baggley, chairman of the governors, said it was a massive boost to have the new centre, which is also available for community use.
She said: "Staff who work with children with special educational needs have had to work for a long time in cramped classrooms, which is far from ideal, though they have always done a great job.
"The new building is great. We were very pleased the academy received the funding from the Government and with the way it has turned out."