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New School to Replace Bucksburn/Newhills Schools - ARCHIVE, CONSULTATION CLOSED

Consultation Outcome

The Education, Culture and Sport committee decided, taking account of the consultation and other factors, to site the new school on the existing Newhills site.

1. What has happened so far

Following consultation with stakeholders, the Policy and Planning (Education) Committee's decision in January 2009 to proceed with the above project was subsequently confirmed by Full Council. This in essence means that both Bucksburn and Newhills Schools will close and a new replacement school will be built on the preferred site.
A Feasibility Study on the two existing school sites reported in January 2010, having discounted other property in vicinity as there were no suitable Council owned properties available. It would not have been in the interests of the public purse to buy additional land when two potential sites were available.

An application for funding support was made to Scottish Government and notification of support in principle was received in autumn 2009.
The Scottish Futures Trust (SFT), set up to administer major developments on behalf of Scottish Government, will provide 50% funding for supported projects in Primary Schools with the balance being funded by Councils.

There is an expectation that the replacement school will provide equivalent facilities to those in the existing schools.

Education, Culture and Sport Officers met with Representatives of SFT in January to discuss outline plans and expectations.

The Council is has been notified of SFT's part-funding support in principle with anticipated commencement of funding to commence in financial year 2011/12.

Engagement with stakeholders:

  • Preliminary meetings with HT/DHT including visual support service have taken place
  • Staff meeting took place on 22nd April at Bucksburn Academy
  • Parent Council meetings on 26th April:
    • 1: preferred site
    • 2: design of new school – stakeholder input
  • Engagement with stakeholders will run to the end of term on 2nd July, 2010 (accept responses into holidays)
  • Stakeholder engagement event took place on Tuesday 25th May at Bucksburn Academy.
  • Leaflet - available at Bucksburn and Newhills Schools or from web site above.
  • Engagement document - available at Bucksburn and Newhills Schools or from web site above.

2. What happens now?

Stakeholders can continue to send in submissions on their preferred site. These will be accepted until after the end of the school holidays – Monday 23rd August, 2010.

3. What happens next?

A report will be submitted to Education, Culture and Sport Committee on 16th September. This will include a summary of outcomes from stakeholder engagement and an Officer recommendation on the preferred site, based upon the Feasibility Report and stakeholder engagement.

  • Elected Members will make a decision on which site will be developed;
  • Some background design work, which is non-site specific, will progress in the meantime;
  • A Working Group, consisting of School staff, parent and pupil representatives and officers will be set up early in school session 2010-11.

4. Time frames

The indicative timescales will be to decant pupils from the site to be developed at the end of school session 2010-11 i.e. Friday 1 July 2011. Work on demolition of the vacated school will begin immediately with construction of the new building and grounds following ion immediately. It is anticipated the new facilities will be handed over in summer 2013 with the new school opening for all pupils during the week beginning Monday 19 August 2013.

The summer holiday period can be used to ensure the new facilities are fully functional prior to the start of the new session.

5. Decant arrangements

Whilst the new school is being built, it will be necessary to move one cohort of pupils to another site. The pupils from the preferred site will be decanted to appropriate alternative accommodation. There are several options around the city but it would be best to avoid transporting pupils to another site as this is inconvenient as well as potentially very costly.

Temporary accommodation could be installed on the school site which is not to be developed. This would allow the two school communities to come together at an early stage which has many benefits.

Decant plans will be drawn up during the summer of 2010 for both site options and these will be notified to parents/carers and implemented on confirmation of the chosen site.

6. Other points

It is anticipated that:

  • the new school will be of a standard which is equivalent to the 3Rs Schools;
  • visits to 3Rs Primary Schools for Parent Council, other parents and staff will be arranged;
  • the new school will be wholly owned and operated by Aberdeen City Council;
  • all design at this stage is indicative and no final decisions have been made about either what the school will look like or the external or internal facilities to be provided;
  • we very much need input from stakeholders, not least of all pupils and staff on room layouts, facilities etc;
  • the new school will build upon strengths of both existing schools, both of which are held in high regard by the community;
  • there are no proposals to change zones at this stage. Bucksburn zone + Newhills zone = new school zone;
  • the new school would be considered along with all other schools in any future city-wide review of zones;
  • implications for staffing – policies exist to manage any situations where there may be an over-allocation of staff in an establishment. The post of Head Teacher of the new school will be the subject of open recruitment.

7. Stakeholder Engagement

The Engagement Event, held from 3.30 to 8.30p.m. on Tuesday 25th May, 2010 at Bucksburn Academy, was attended by approximately eighty stakeholders, including parents/carers, pupils and an MSP.

Attendees were able to leave their views on the preferred site on cards.

A summary of all stakeholder contributions will be included in the report to committee and a synopsis will be circulated to Parent Councils, the Community Council and schools.

Please note that all submissions on the preferred site must be received by Monday 23rd August 2010.

For further information, please see the Stakeholder Engagement Document PDF file which can be downloaded from the panel on the right side of the page.

Back to the Current Consultations home page.


  • Submissions can be made in writing to: Annette Bruton
    Director of Education, Culture and Sport
    St Nicholas House
    Broad Street
    AB10 1AR

    Please note that all submissions on the preferred site must be received by Monday 23 August 2010.

  • Derek Samson
    Phone: (01224) 346315