Sponsor named for new special school in Doncaster

Warren Carratt, chief executive of Nexus Multi Academy Trust
Warren Carratt, chief executive of Nexus Multi Academy Trust

A sponsor has been announced for a new Doncaster special free school for children with conditions like autism.

Nexus Multi Academy Trust will open a new 100-place school on land near to the existing Hungerhill School, in Edenthorpe.

Director of people at Doncaster Council Damian Allen

Director of people at Doncaster Council Damian Allen

The school will be for children aged five to 19-years-old with complex communication and interaction needs, autism spectrum disorder and other social and mental health needs in Doncaster.

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Nexus MAT was also approved to open a 60-place special free school for children with autism spectrum disorder and social, emotional, and mental health needs in Sheffield.

Its chief executive, Warren Carratt, said: "We are humbled and excited to be named as the preferred sponsor to open the two new special schools.

"Nexus MAT was created to make the education system better in our local area and we are thrilled to be working with our local authority partners to co-produce two new schools and bring some much needed capacity to the special school system in the region.

“We look forward to working with children, families and our sister special schools across Doncaster and Sheffield to ensure that our new offer brings the choice and diversity families want and need.

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"We already have a great working relationship with Doncaster and Sheffield Councils and I am thrilled to be entering into this next phase of partnership working.”

Chairman of the Nexus MAT board, Andrew Child, said: "We recognise that we have a huge responsibility here and we know that we have the skills, experience and enthusiasm to be successful.

“In the past 22 months we have secured an additional £1.5m to improve our existing special academies and by opening two more special schools in South Yorkshire we are continuing to make the positive impact we planned to when we formed the multi academy trust."

The trust also runs Abbey School and Kelford School, both in Kimberworth, Rotherham; Rotherham Hilltop School, in Maltby; Pennine View School in Conisbrough.

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Crags Community School, a mainstream primary in Maltby, is in the process of joining the trust.

Director of people at Doncaster Council, Damian Allen, said: “We are pleased that Nexus has been selected as the sponsor for the Special School for Communication and Interaction that will be established in Doncaster.

"We had a lot of interest from local and national organisations and we ensured that during the selection process parents and carers, as well as ourselves and the Department for Education were involved.

“Nexus is a local provider to Doncaster and South Yorkshire and has experience in supporting young people with special educational needs through education."

He added: "We are committed to ensuring that all young people in Doncaster have access to the best education and also education that meets their needs.

"We are now looking forward to developing plans for the new site and further details about the school will be released as we approve them.”