Kensington and Chelsea’s first dedicated school for children with autism and learning difficulties, which is due to open in the 2021/22 academic year, has been named Kensington Queensmill.
The school, which will have capacity for 80 pupils and has been made possible thanks to a £36.5million investment from Kensington and Chelsea Council, is currently being built next door to Barlby Primary School in North Kensington.
Kensington Queensmill was chosen as a potential name due to the involvement of Queensmill School as a sponsor and was picked as the favourite by just over 30 percent of the 400 people who took part in a public consultation held earlier this year.
Building work at Kensington Queensmill has been progressing throughout the pandemic, with builders from contractors Mace observing social distancing and hygiene guidelines. The latest milestone came at the end of September, when the crane at the centre of the site was dismantled.
Cllr Josh Rendall, Lead Member for Family and Children’s Services, said:
“The need for special educational settings is growing both in London and nationally, and almost 40 per cent of our local young people with an Education, Health and Care Plan currently have to travel out of the borough for suitable schooling.
“Kensington Queensmill will help to address that need, bringing state-of-the-art facilities and learning to their doorstep, benefiting families and reducing time spent travelling to and from school.”
Freddie Adu, Head of sponsor school Queensmill, said:
“We are immeasurably happy and excited about our forthcoming new special school. We are proud and grateful too that all stakeholders within the community have consented to the school being named Kensington Queensmill.
“We believe the name is fitting in that it identifies the locality while also providing an immediate association with the work we do at Queensmill, which many will be familiar with.”
Visit our YouTube channel to see staff and pupils from Queensmill School celebrating the naming of Kensington Queensmill.