Sussex

Redesign for 'innovative' £38m Bexhill High Academy

Bexhill High School
Image caption The £38m school opened in Bexhill in 2010

An academy in East Sussex is to be redesigned at a cost of £6m five years after the £38m building opened.

Bexhill High moved to a new site in 2010 and promised "innovative" teaching including three-hour lessons and large open plan spaces for 90-pupil classes.

In 2012 it became an academy run by Prospect Academies Trust but months later was placed in special measures.

It will now be redesigned under new owners, with the head saying the layout impeded the progress of students.

Attwood Academies took over in 2014 after Prospect closed and will redesign the school with traditional classrooms.

'Ill-thought-out design'

It is hoped the school will be removed from special measures this term.

Attwood Academies chairman Tom Attwood said he was confident the investment would help move the school towards an "outstanding" accreditation.

He said: "The children of Bexhill have in recent years been let down badly by an ill-thought-out building design and, worse, a dreadful implementation of the new build."

Principal Heidi Brown, who was appointed head teacher last year, said in a statement on the school's website the poorly designed building had impeded student progress.

She said traditional acoustically-independent classrooms with up-to-date technology would allow students and teachers to hear what was said in lessons and participate.

Describing the planned redesign, Mr Attwood said: "We've spent an enormous amount of time trying to make sure that this is going to be done properly.

"The right things will be done. We work very closely with the Department for Education.

"We and they recognise it simply was not fit for purpose and the stuff we're doing this time will make it fit for purpose."

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