Decision this month on bid to rebuild Calderdale schools

Todmorden High School
Todmorden High School

SCHOOLS Minister Nick Gibb has promised to decide this month whether to make cash available for rebuilding two Calderdale secondary schools.

A third school has been told it must rely on someone other than the Government to pay for a sixth form.

Todmorden High and Calder High have been on the replacement waiting list for years

The Minister told the Commons: “We are planning to announce the outcome of applications for the Priority School Building Programme in May.”

Labour leader Coun Tim Swift said both schools desperately required rebuilding.

“Last month, Conservative MP Craig Whittaker was reassuring us that there would be a decision before the end of March. We urgently need answers. Nothing we have heard has helped the schools to move forward,” he said.

Mr Whittaker said the schools failed to qualify for funding from the former Government’s “Building Schools for the Future” programme because they were academically too successful.

Asked whether Park Lane Learning Trust might get money for a sixth form at Exley, Halifax, the Schools Minister said: “We have up to £44 million to support new post-16 places where there is a basic need due to demographic pressures but, in general, should a school wish to extend its offer and open a sixth form then it would be required to this without capital funding from this Department.”