South East Wales

£20.5m plan for three new primary schools in Torfaen

Image caption The new schools could open in September 2016

A £20.5m plan to build three new primary schools in Torfaen has been approved by councillors.

The replacement of Blenheim Road, Llantarnam Primary and Ysgol Panteg schools is part of the council's 21st Century Schools programme.

Consultations with parents and teachers are set to begin later this month and the schools could be open by September 2016.

They will be joint funded by the Welsh government and Torfaen council.

Cabinet members agreed to submit a business case to the Welsh government for new 315-pupil schools for Llantarnam Primary and Blenheim Road Primary, both in Cwmbran.

It also proposes a 420-space school for the Welsh medium school Ysgol Panteg, in Pontypool.

A report to councillors said there would be a "serious risk of school building failure" at the two English medium schools, and a shortage of Welsh medium primary provision if the three projects do not go ahead.

It predicts an extra 150 Welsh medium places will be needed in the county by 2016.

The authority is also seeking extra funding, which would enable Llantarnam and Blenheim Road primaries to expand in the future.

Councillor Brian Mawby, Torfaen's executive member for children and young people, said he hoped the new buildings would boost the quality of education and pupil performance.

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