Published: Wednesday, 3rd March 2021
An informal community consultation on the proposal to build a new secondary school in Galashiels will be launched later this month.
A statutory education consultation, focused on the educational benefits of a new school rather than the site or building itself, will also commence shortly.
A dedicated website is being developed to provide the local community with information on the proposal and the opportunity to provide their views on the five options for the replacement of Galashiels Academy we have investigated.
The consultation will launch during week commencing 15 March.
Our preferred option is to locate a new 1,000-pupil community campus within the existing school boundary and a portion of the town’s Scott Park.
Demolition of the existing school buildings would follow as well as extensive landscaping work to expand the available greenspace for school and community use.
Future formal consultations
The initial community consultation will be followed by the submission of a pre-application notice for planning purposes before finally the lodging of a full planning application. These latter two steps will include formal consultation with the community on site and building specific matters.
An upcoming statutory education consultation, focused on the educational benefits of a new school, will be announced shortly.
Councillor Carol Hamilton, Executive Member for Children and Young People
“I am delighted that we are now at the stage with our plans for a new secondary school in Galashiels that means we can soon kick off the consultation process with school communities across the Galashiels cluster, local residents and wider stakeholders.
“The first step is this informal consultation to get feedback on all the options we have considered, but in particular on the Council’s preferred option. Comments will be used to refine the detailed proposal which will be taken through the formal planning process later in the year.
“We are committed to increasing the educational and learning opportunities for all generations within the community and this new facility will support that. It will not only deliver a new school, including dedicated additional support needs facilities, but will provide new and improved community facilities, from a swimming pool to community meeting spaces as well as the extension and enhancement of Scott Park.
“When the consultation opens I would encourage pupils, parents and everyone within the Galashiels community to play their part and feed back their views and comments.”
Funding for new school
The Scottish Government announced in December 2020 that it will provide funding support for the new community campus, supporting the ongoing costs over a 25 year period. We will be required to provide the up-front capital costs of the building work.
The current aim is for the new campus to open in 2025.