Hackney Education Sufficiency and Estates Strategy (including specialist provision)

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Context to this strategy

This strategy follows from Hackney's SEND Provision Plan of Intent to review and increase SEND provision within Hackney.


Summary of the 158 new school places created over the last 3 years

  • Queensbridge Primary School - Additional Resourced Provision for up to 10 students with Autism. Completed for admission in March 2020. 

  • Gainsborough Primary School -  Additional Resourced Provision for up to 10 students with Social, Emotional, and Mental Health needs. Completed for admissions 2021.

  • Ickburgh School - 14 additional places through adapting existing accommodation. Completed for admissions 2021.

  • The Garden School  - Opening a second site to expand by 50 places to include post 16. Completed for admissions in February 2022. 

  • Side by Side Special School have opened a new building and Hackney Education have invested to 50 new Hackney places available in 2023

  • Nightingale Primary School - Additional Resource Provision for up to 12 Students with Autism. Completed for September 2023 admissions.

  • Simon Marks Primary School - Additional Resource Propcion for up to 12 students with Autism. Completed for admission September 2023.


Hackney Education continues to review the sufficiency of our local provision.

You can find our plan for continued increases in SEND places in our Education Sufficiency and Estate Strategy here. 

We will update information about developments to the strategy on this page.

What is the Education Sufficiency and Estate Strategy?

The Education Sufficiency and Estates Strategy (ESE) summarises Hackney's 4 priority issues:

  • falling primary mainstream school rolls

  • the projected fall in secondary mainstream school rolls due to a declining primary roll

  • the significant increase in requirement for SEND education provision

  • a long-term sustainable use plan for all education sites in the borough

Please see Hackney's strategy paper here. This commits us to finding solutions to the key issues listed above.

The strategy paper details that Hackney needs to address these issues around our pupil population. The strategy proposes to review the current school estate alongside other Hackney-owned land options. This is with a view to creating more special provision places for children and young people with complex SEND in the borough. It proposes to work with existing primary schools and secondary schools to seek viable long-term solutions.

Some schools are experiencing increasingly unmanageable budget pressure due to falling pupil rolls. This paper does not list individual sites or address individual concerns.  Updates on this topic can be found here

Background information - Why has this strategy been developed?

Since 2015 demand for reception places across London has decreased each year. There are complex reasons for this detrimental impact on school rolls include:

  • a combination of changes to welfare benefits, 
  • rising rents
  • Brexit 
  • more recently the global pandemic

Falling reception rolls have led to a significant number of surplus reception places. This is in Hackney, London and more widely; it is affecting the running, efficiency and  financial stability of some schools.

The impact of falling rolls on individual schools creates challenges for school leaders and needs to be managed. An excess number of surplus places in the system can lead to more moves between schools than is helpful for young people. The implementation plans following the strategy will consider guidance for affected schools. 

At the same time there has been a significant increase in the number of children and young  people (CYP) with Education Health Care Plans (EHCP). This is a 49% increase over the last 5 years with an average annual year on year growth of 10.3%. Last year (2021), saw a 17% increase in requests for EHC Needs Assessment.

The demand for high quality provision and specialist places in local settings is outstripping supply. This is in line with national trends. The impact of this is significant.

While the need for specialist places and support services has increased, the mainstream CYP population is projected to fall. This means that the percentage of each year’s pupil cohort identified as requiring SEND support and provision will increase.  

The intention is to increase SEND provision within Hackney so we have to rely less on independent and out of borough settings. This is so children with SEND can attend local schools in their community.

How will the SEND Projects in this strategy be funded?

The projects proposed would be in part funded by the £15m we have secured from the High Needs Provision Capital Allocations (HNPCA). This is a grant paid to local authorities with the aim that it should primarily be used to meet the capital costs associated with providing new places and improving existing provisions, for:

  • Children and young people with complex needs,
  • Children and young people who have Education, Health, and Care plans (EHCPs)
  • Where appropriate other children and young people with SEND who do not have an EHCP.

Local authority number

Local authority name

High Needs Provision Capital Allocations 2021-22 (note 1)

High Needs Provision Capital Allocations 2022-23 (notes 2 & 3)

High Needs Provision Capital Allocations 2023-24 (notes 2 & 3)

Total High Needs Provisional Capital Allocations 2021-24

204

Hackney

£2,724,671



£10,083,308

£2,685,775

£15,493,754


This funding will only cover some of the proposed provision. The rest of the capital investment required to meet these needs will form part of the wider strategy and invest to save business case. It will be combined with further investment due to be explored.

The requirement for solutions to surplus school places in the school system

Summary of the 158 new school places created over the last 3 years

  • Queensbridge Primary School - Additional Resourced Provision for up to 10 students with Autism. Completed for admission in March 2020. 
  • Gainsborough Primary School -  Additional Resourced Provision for up to 10 students with Social, Emotional, and Mental Health needs. Completed for admissions 2021.
  • Ickburgh School - 14 additional places through adapting existing accommodation. Completed for admissions 2021.
  • The Garden School  - Opening a second site to expand by 50 places to include post 16. Completed for admissions in February 2022. 
  • Side by Side Special School has opened a new building and Hackney Education has invested in 50 new Hackney places available in 2023
  • Nightingale Primary School - Additional Resource Provision for up to 12 Students with Autism. Completed for September 2023 admissions.
  • Simon Marks Primary School - Additional Resource Propcion for up to 12 students with Autism. Completed for admission September 2023.

Hackney Education continues to review the sufficiency of our local provision.

You can find our plan for continued increases in SEND places in our Education Sufficiency and Estate Strategy here. 

We will continue to update information about developments to the strategy on this page.


The number of children at a lower primary age across the borough has been falling. This means that many schools have been faced with the challenge of running schools with surplus places. This can impact schools and their budgets.

Schools and Hackney Education are working to find long-term solutions to this issue. Most schools affected in this way have already planned changes or begun to implement changes. These changes include Pupil Admission Number (PAN) reduction. Other options will need to be considered as outlined in the estate strategy paper.

Hackney Education is continuing to work on a borough-wide approach. Firstly reviewing refreshed data and trends including; surplus places, schools in deficit, and schools with large surplus physical capacity.

You can find information and updates on school mergers and potential closures here. 

The requirement for an increase in SEND provision in Hackney

In June 2021 we published the option for schools to submit an expression of interest (EOI) to be involved in the creation of a new Additional Resource Provision. We also asked for views on the expansion of our special schools.

The outcome after strict evaluation of the EOI submissions was that 9 schools progressed to the next stage of feasibility review. In three of these schools, the new ARPs have been developed and the first pupils have already been placed (September 2023).

We are approaching the urgent need for SEND provision in three phases.

  • Phase 1A - this phase addressed the most urgent need for places for Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC). Completed and funded within the current SEND capital budget. This has been completed for September 2023, see details below.

  • Phase 1B - was approved by the Cabinet in March 2023. Feasibility studies have been completed. These are currently in the design phase and soon a public consultation will take place.

Phase 2 - expansion of special schools. Evaluation of suitable sites is underway. Feasibility and build options are under review with the steering group (from April 2023 to 2025)

SEND Provision Update - Update November 2022

As mentioned above the provision is being reviewed in three stages .

Phase 1A

There is good progress on phase 1A of our programme for adding or expanding ARPs (Additional Resourced Provisions). This phase looks at the more urgent need for places for pupils with Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC) and Severe Learning Disability (SLD).

Schools in phase 1A include: 

  • Simon Marks Jewish Primary School where the aim is to create a 12 place ASC ARP ready for September 2023 admissions. 

  • Nightingale Primary School where the aim is to create a 12 place ASC ARP ready for September 2023 admissions.

  • Side by Side Special School where the school will receive a grant towards their new school building with the agreement for 50 further Hackney School Places.  These places will be for children with ASC and SLD needs and the new Hackney Places will be available in 2022 onwards.

Side by Side school building has been completed and Simon Marks and Nightingale projects are progressing through the detailed design stages. All of the projects will be subject to funding agreements being in place between the schools and Hackney Education. This will include the terms and expectation of the provision.

A consultation for the maintained schools ran from 20 June to 17 July. The statutory public consultation for the maintained schools can be seen here (PDF).

Phase 1B (additional new ARP provisions and expansion works), and Phase 2 (potential expansion of special schools) are all subject to review, feasibility, costing and approval by the Education SLT (Senior Leadership Team) and Cabinet.

The outcome of the first stage of feasibility studies and review of viability, together with further information and next steps on timeline is expected at the end of March 2023. 

 

SEND Provision Update - Update September 2023

As mentioned above the provision is being reviewed in three stages.

Phase 1A

Phase 1A of our programme, for adding or expanding ARPs (Additional Resourced Provisions) has been completed and the first wave of pupils has been placed in September 2023. This phase addresses places for the most urgent needs for pupils with Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC) and Severe Learning Disability (SLD).
Schools in phase 1A included:

  • Simon Marks Jewish Primary School where we have created a 12-place ASC ARP open for admissions in September 2023.
  • Nightingale Primary School where we have created a 12-place ASC ARP open for September 2023 admissions.
  • Side by Side Special School where the school received a grant towards their new school building with the agreement for 50 further Hackney School Places. These places are for children with ASC and SLD needs and the new Hackney places are available from 2023 onwards.

A consultation for the maintained schools ran from 20 June to 17 July.  The statutory public consultation for the maintained schools can be seen here (PDF).



Phase 1B

Phase 1B (additional new ARP provisions and expansion works), has been progressed through feasibility and detailed design stage, following working group meetings with school representatives and specialists. The statutory public consultation for Phase 1B is to begin in the following months. If this phase progresses the aim is for the provision to be open for new admissions by September 2025.
. This phase looks to create places for pupils with Speech, Language, and Communication Needs (SLCN), Social Emotional, and Mental Health Needs (SEMH), Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD), and Early Years provisions.

Schools in Phase 1B include:

  • Sebright Primary School where the aim is to create a 24 place SLCN ARP
  • Stoke Newington School (SNS) and Sixth Form where the aim is to create a 30-place SEMH ARP
  • Comet Nursery School & Children’s Centre where the aim is to create a 12 full-time equivalent place Early years ARP
  • The Bridge Academy where the aim is to create a 15 place MLD ARP, the academy has completed consultation

The Bridge Academy school building has been completed and Sebright, SNS, and Comet projects are progressing through the detailed design stages.

All the projects are subject to consultation, and funding agreements are in place between the schools and Hackney Education. This will include the terms and expectations of the provision.


Phase 2 (potential expansion of special schools) is subject to review, feasibility, costing, and approval by the Education SLT (Senior Leadership Team) and Cabinet.

Further updates will be provided on this webpage as the provision progresses.

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Page last modified: 13/11/2023