The Beacon College
In 2017, the Government invited Local Authorities to make a case for the building of a new Special Needs School in their area. This was a highly competitive process and only a small number of proposals were approved. One of the successful applications was from Herefordshire for the building of a new 16-19 Special Needs College that would provide the highest quality of teaching and learning, support students in other mainstream settings and be a resource hub for staff working with children and families with SEND. In addition, the new college would offer high quality information and guidance, provide an inclusive community facility outside school hours and enable internship and work experiences.
The next step for Herefordshire was to identify an organisation that would turn this high quality, ambitious vision into a reality. The selection process, carried out jointly with the government, chose Barrs Court to run the new college. Barrs Court already ensures that its students get an “outstanding quality of education” (OFSTED 2011,2016,2019) and this decision means that they would get an environment to match the quality of teaching.
Barrs Court will ensure that Beacon College provides an outstanding quality of education, in a state-of-the-art building
Together with Herefordshire LA, Barrs Court will ensure that The Beacon College becomes a key part of the County’s strategy, as a centre of excellence and focal point for the SEND community. Students will achieve maximum personal independence and active community participation.
Broadlands Primary School on Prospect Walk, Hereford was closed in 2015 and moved to remodelled buildings on the neighbouring high school site. The primary school buildings were very poor quality and expensive to repair, maintain and run and, since 2015, the site has been “mothballed”. This site’s closeness to the county’s 3 colleges and a high school was ideal from an educational point of view. It was also good from a practical point of view as it was already owned by the council and as it was previously used as a school it had “education use” as a planning designation. This meant that work on the new building project could start with far fewer delays than elsewhere.
Beacon College is due to open in September 2021
News and Updates
Throughout the last year, Barrs Court staff have worked with the contractors, Interserve, on the design and finish of the new college. In August 2020, following a delay caused by the COVID 19 outbreak, work started on site.
Beacon College on Twitter @BeaconHereford
Interserve on Twitter @Interserve
Have your say
Your opinion is very important to us. The link below takes you to a very quick survey about the Beacon College project. The results from this are shared with the Department for Education.