Closed 17 Jun 2014

Opened 6 May 2014


What is the project?

  • To build additional Primary and Secondary phase ASD units for up to 12 learners with high functioning autism/social communication disorder
  • To build new 6th Form provision for up to 40 learners. This will start with 16 places in the 2014/15 academic year, a further 16 places 2015/16 and an additional 8 places in 2016/17.


Why We Are Consulting

Why are we doing this?

Post 16

There is a gap in post 16 provision in the north of the County for learners with special educational needs. This capital project will provide specialist capacity to ensure that post 16 learners will have access to high quality specialist provision.

This capital project will develop the Local Offer, post 16, for both current Sidestrand students and those in local high schools for whom progression is difficult.  The project could also offer places to Year 11 and 12 students, who are currently educated out of the county, and support their return to Norfolk.

It is hoped that the new sixth form will also help to reduce the number of young people with learning difficulties and disabilities in North Norfolk who are not in education, employment or training (NEET). They will have the opportunity to stay in education for longer and have access a range of vocational learning.

Primary and Secondary ASD

One of the priorities for the SEN Commissioning Team is to increase Complex Needs School places, particularly for ASD learners. The extra 12 places at Sidestrand for primary and secondary age pupils will enable more learners who meet the complex needs school profile to be taught closer to their homes and prevent more costly placements in the non maintained sector.

How is it being funded?

The school and local authority was successful in submitting a bid for demographic capital growth funding from the Education Funding Agency to fund the 6th form build.

The primary and secondary ASD units are being funded by the County Council.

What are the timescales?

The project is currently in the feasibility stage and is subject to statutory consultation and planning application. Should planning be approved, the buildings will be ready in the later part of the 2014/15 academic year.

What does this mean for admissions?

Although the buildings will not be ready for the start of the 2014/15 academic year some provision will be available from September 2014, subject to statutory consultation process.


We will begin considering pupils with statements of SEN for admission to the new provisions in the second half of the summer term and places will be offered ‘in principle’ in the first instance subject to appropriate accommodation being available.

Admissions will be via the current special school admissions process and referrals for places will be made by case-responsible Additional Needs Coordinators.

Initially there will be up to 16 places available in the post 16 provision and up to 6 in each of the primary and secondary ASD provisions.

What is the key message for parents and carers and young people?

This significant investment in one of our own complex needs schools shows how proud we are of the education it provides. By increasing the number of places there we are improving the choice of provision for some of our most vulnerable young people close to their own homes.

How can I learn more about the proposals and have my say?

The consultation launches on Tuesday 6th May and runs for 6 weeks until Tuesday 17th June. You can let us know your views online at or email

There will be two drop in sessions at the school on Friday 9th and Tuesday 13th May, anytime between 3.30-5.30pm where anyone is welcome to attend and find out more about the plans.

A paper copy of the consultation can be sent to you by ringing the customer service centre at the County Council on 0344 800 8020

Your comments will be anonymous - your name or anything that could identify you will not be included in any report. However, we cannot guarantee that this information will be withheld if it is requested under the Freedom of Information Act.

What Happens Next

What happens following the consultation?

Your views will help us make a decision about the future provision at Sidestrand Hall. The Director of Children's Services at Norfolk County Council will make a decision in June about whether or not to proceed to the next stage.

We would then have to publish a formal public notice. A final decision would then be made in late July 2014.


  • Sidestrand


  • Children
  • Parents and carers and guardians
  • All residents
  • Schools


  • Children and young people
  • Education and early years