First look inside one of Norfolk’s newest schools
PUBLISHED: 16:46 30 November 2018 | UPDATED: 16:58 30 November 2018
The halls of St Clements Hill Primary Academy are pristine and quiet.
It will be years before the classrooms and corridors at Norwich’s newest school are thronged with the 420 children it is built to teach.
But the leadership team from its sponsor Right for Success Trust are hopeful that its first class – 21 reception children who started in September – is a sign of bigger and better things to come.
Glenn Russell, executive headteacher at St Clements, is grateful to the parents who chose the school for their children “before there was even a building for them to look at”.
He believes the “effective track record” of the academy trust – which runs schools including Stalham Academy, where he is also executive head, and Sewell Park Academy – had helped bring parents on board.
“The trust’s schools are now doing a really good job and the feedback from parents is really positive,” he said.
“We’ve recently had a couple of open sessions [at St Clements] and they have been well attended.
“Also we are an all-through primary – this side of the ring road there are not a lot of those, they are generally infant and junior schools. With that, you have an extra transition that parents don’t always want.
“There is also a proposal to open a nursery at Sewell Park Academy – then you would have a nursery, an all-through primary and a high school which is a great opportunity for parents.”
The plans for St Clements were approved by Norwich City Council last October and construction took less than nine months.
While it came with challenges, building a school from the ground up gave exiting opportunities to the trust.
St Clements has facilities including a home economics and science lab, 14 classrooms (each with capacity for 30 children) with space for interactive whiteboards and “learning walls”, a central library and a large hall which can be split to accommodate clubs and diners at lunchtimes.
Mr Russell said: “There are playing areas and a massive field so the grounds available to the school to develop and use, for example for a forest school and outdoor learning, are huge.
“Most children do not experience a home economics or science lab until they get to secondary school but these facilities have been planned in which is a great opportunity for the children.”