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Expanded Adamsdown Primary School officially opened

The expansion of Adamsdown Primary School in Cardiff has been marked by an official opening of the new extension. 

The children were joined by Welsh Government Education Secretary, Kirsty Williams and Deputy Leader for Cardiff Council and Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, Cllr Sarah Merry, in unveiling a plaque and cutting the ribbon to declare the new school building officially open.

It took 11 months and £3.6m to complete, jointly funded by Cardiff Council and Welsh Government through Band A of the £164m 21stCentury Schools and Education Programme for the city.

Education Secretary, Kirsty Williams, said:

“I am so pleased that the Welsh Government has been able to support this £3.6 million investment in Adamsdown Primary, with funding of £2.8 million under our 21st Century Schools and Education Programme.  Looking around the building today, it is clear that this is money well spent and will benefit learners and teachers for years to come.

“This project is part of the first wave of the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools and Education Programme, which will see the rebuild and refurbishment of over 150 schools and colleges across Wales, representing the largest investment in our schools and colleges since the 1960s.”

The new, standalone extension, has seen Adamsdown primary doubling in size, becoming a two form entry school, able to accommodate up to 420 pupils between Reception class and Year 6 age, plus nursery children.

Deputy Leader of Cardiff Council and Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, Cllr Sarah Merry, said:

“We have seen a significant increase in the number of primary school pupils in the area over recent years, and as well as providing extra places, with Welsh Government, the project to expand Adamsdown Primary School will ensure that the children will benefit from a modern learning environment, fit for the 21stCentury.

“Through Band A of the 21stCentury Schools programme for Cardiff, £164m is being invested, to expand existing schools and build new ones. As we speak, five primary schools and a brand new home for Cardiff West Community High school are being built. Not to mention the recently completed Eastern High, and newly opened primary schools, such as Pontprennau.

“I have seen for myself the real difference these Band A projects are making to the lives of our children and young people, including the pupils of Adamsdown Primary School, and there is more to come as we approach the start of a further £284m, Band B investment.”

Adamsdown Primary School Headteacher, Ms Emma Thomas, said:

“The completion of this project is very exciting for our whole school community and a significant opportunity to offer the children of Adamsdown a modern 21st century learning environment in which we can all work towards implementing the new curriculum.

“Our improvement since 2015 has been rapid – recognised by us climbing from red to yellow in this year’s school categorisation – and already the updated school has allowed us to enhance Adamsdown Primary School.

“We now have a large building with new catering facilities, a multi-use sports pitch, climbing frame, landscaped gardens and environmentally friendly facilities. The new building has enabled us to create a happy and purposeful learning environment.”

The new 1,150 square metre block provides classrooms and toilets for the lower school, a new main hall and kitchen.

There are also six breakout, or quiet spaces included in the design. These allow staff to work with the children in smaller groups, away from their classrooms.

The new main hall provides an area within which the pupils can come together for assemblies, performances or concerts. It is double-storey in height, providing additional space for teaching, sports and leisure.

The central circulation area is wide enough to be used as a flexible teaching area, and is bathed in natural light thanks to the high level windows.

Each classroom provides a bright learning space, with a vast array of external windows, and additional internal windows borrowing natural light from the central circulation area.

Outside, there is a Multi-use Games Area, providing a designated space for informal games and teaching of football, netball and basketball.