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Multi-Million-Pound School Improvements

Written by on 1st September 2021

Schools across Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough are currently benefiting from a £7.7M programme of improvements as part of the Council’s ongoing multi-million-pound investment in Education.

Improvement works totalling over £4M are being carried out in Rhondda Cynon Taf schools as part of the Council’s Planned Capital Programme, including electrical rewiring, kitchen and dining hall refurbishments, windows and door replacements, fire alarm upgrades, toilet refurbishments, boiler replacements and roof renewals.

A further £3.5M from the Council’s Additional Maintenance and Repair Capital Programme is also being earmarked for summer projects in local schools such as improved ventilation, new external canopies to create outdoor learning areas, new toilet and hygiene areas, roofing works, general repairs to the fabric of buildings, upgrading classrooms to 21st Century Schools standard and new external doors and windows.

More than 150 projects are planned in schools across Rhondda Cynon Taf, many of which have been completed before the start of the new Academic Year.

Kitchen and dining facilities are being remodelled/refurbished at Coed Y Lan Primary School (£80,000); Penyrenglyn Primary School (£30,000); Ton Pentre Junior School (£30,000); Treorchy Comprehensive School (£100,000) and Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Ynyswen (£30,000).

Window and door replacement work is being carried out at Alaw Primary School (£120,000); Mountain Ash Comprehensive School (£50,000) and Porth Community School (£30,000).

Electrical works is being carried out at Coed Y Lan Primary School (£44,000); Llanhari Primary School (£45,000); Llwydcoed Primary School (£25,000); SS Gabriel and Raphael RC Primary School (£17,000); Tref Y Rhyg Primary School (£52,000); Trehopcyn Primary School (£42,000).

A total of £700,000 is also being investing in installing external canopies at schools across the County Borough, creating outdoor seating and learning areas.

Councillor Joy Rosser, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council Cabinet Member for Education and Inclusion Services, said: “An ongoing programme of work is happening across our school estate, to ensure school buildings continue to support their learning environments so they can continue to thrive in education.

“A total £7.170M has been allocated to the Council’s Planned Capital Programme for 2021/22. The continuation of the three-year rolling Capital Programme and sustaining the level of funding will continue to make significant enhancements to the quality of our school premises and has been a vital part of the Council school modernisation programme, in order to prepare schools for the new Curriculum for Wales.

“This Council, over the last year, has supported schools to meet Welsh Government’s Covid-19 operational guidance, which has challenged us to change the way we view the learning environment of our diverse portfolio of our school sites and buildings.

“This additional investment will deliver improvements to the learning environment, as well as ensuring we provide well-ventilated spaces and enhanced outdoor areas, that allow pupils to move around the school premises safely whilst adhering to the latest safety guidance.

“One of the Council’s most successful interventions in schools over the last difficult year has been the provision of outdoor canopies. These have been well utilised for both teaching and learning and provide that all-important additional, useable, external space, taking the pressure off the indoor environment. The Council is keen to replicate this success and deliver even more provision in our schools.”

The Council is continuing to deliver its long-term school modernisation improvement programme, supporting one of the Council’s Corporate Plan Priorities: ‘Prosperity – creating the opportunity for people and businesses to be innovative, be entrepreneurial, and fulfil their potential and prosper.’

The funding also forms part of the Council’s wider £597.2m #RCTinvest programme, resulting in the local authority continuing to make significant enhancements to the quality of its schools, which is a vital part of both its school modernisation programme and 21st Century Schools Programme.

The completion of these projects will mean that the Council will have invested over £35M in capital improvement works since 2015/16, and this is in addition to the over £200M of improvements delivered to date through the 21st Century Schools and College programme, in partnership with Welsh Government.

Regular updates of the school improvements programme will appear on Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Facebook and Twitter accounts in the coming weeks.