Schools debate - 'What about Lenzie Academy?'

Consultation with parents, teachers and the wider community in Bishopbriggs is set to begin after the go-ahead for a new £11.8 million replacement school.

Balmuildy Primary School, Bishopbriggs

At a meeting of the full council on Thursday, September 23, Councillors unanimously agreed to commit more than £30 million to three new primary school projects in East Dunbartonshire.

This includes constructing a new building to replace the current Balmuildy Primary School which, at more than 60 years old, requires significant investment. It has a school role of more than 300 pupils.

Sign up to our GlasgowWorld Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

More than £20 million is also to be spent on refurbishment work to both Milngavie and Bearsden primary schools.

At Thursday’s council meeting, it was agreed that the council would “actively engage” with the parent councils of the schools involved, as well as the wider community.

The three schools were identified as needing urgent action following an ongoing review by the council of the condition, suitability and sufficiency data of the schools estate in East Dunbartonshire.

At Thursday’s meeting, Councillor Gillian Renwick (SNP Lenzie & Kirkintilloch South) requested how the “scoring criteria” for the work was carried out by the council.

She pointed out that Oxgang Primary School in Kirkintilloch and Lenzie Academy required a similar level of work.

In March this year, a commitment was made at a special council meeting for a feasibility study to build a new Lenzie Academy.

A council official told the meeting he was happy to share the assessment of other schools with councillors.

The new Balmuildy is anticipated to be completed within two and a half years.

This includes 12 months engagement with the school community, design, appointment of contractor and preliminary works.

After the meeting, Joint Council Leader Vaughan Moody, said: "New schools were considered for all three locations but only Balmuildy has the space for a tandem build replacement."

On completion of the new school, a second phase of construction will see the demolition of the old school and the development of the grounds and landscaping.

The budgeted costs of these three projects will be incorporated in a full update of the Council’s 10-year capital investment plan, and grant funding will also be sought from a future phase of the Scottish Government Learning Estate Improvement Funding (LEIP) programme, where energy consumption is a key consideration in the funding criteria.