Academy trust defends security measures police want introduced at new Sheffield school

Artist impression of the new Woodside School
Artist impression of the new Woodside School
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The academy which will run a new school in Sheffield has defended the security measures police want introduced there.

South Yorkshire Police wants a raft of measures introduced at a new £23m school in Sheffield including no public footpaths and bins and benches fixed to the ground to prevent them being used in crimes.

The force said the new Woodside School, a through-school for 1,200 children aged two to 18 in Burngreave, is in a 'high crime area' and needs to be designed accordingly.

Police want a variety of measures introduced including no public footpaths through school grounds, as they fear it could create an opportunity for crime and anti-social behaviour; landscaping be kept below one metre and trees should have no foliage below two metres; and external furniture be fixed to the ground to prevent it being used as a climbing aid or tool to break into the schools

The school will be run by the Astrea Academy Trust.

A spokesman for the trust, formerly Reach4 Academy Trust, said: “Woodside presents a very exciting opportunity for local families in an area that is undergoing considerable regeneration.

"The curriculum we offer will be challenging and knowledge rich, complemented by inspiring enrichment activities that help every young person discover their talents.

"The measures proposed are fairly standard for a new secondary school of this size, and when we open in 2018 Woodside will offer an education that inspires beyond measure for all our children and young people.”

The school will be one of two built in the city next year, with a secondary and sixth form school planned for 1,200 pupils, off Carterknowle Road.

It will incorporate the old Grade II listed Pye Bank School building.

South Yorkshire Police has met with architects to discuss the plans and has submitted a statement to Sheffield Council's planning department outlining its wishes.

A council spokesman said, as with every new school in Sheffield, it was putting in security measures 'to ensure the safety of all our pupils.'