Posted: 20 September, 2018

Development Announcement

General, Junior School, News, Senior School, Sixth Form

We are delighted to announce that the London Borough of Wandsworth has approved our plans for a new Science, Music, Drama and Debating Centre.

On 19th September, fittingly our 125th birthday, permission was granted for this investment in the school’s future. Central to the school’s vision of being a leading learning community, the new facility will celebrate science and the arts in an inspiring environment.

What happens now?

  • After half term Senior School science lessons will move into temporary accommodation. These are high quality, bright, well-resourced laboratories, designed to meet the needs of our students in these popular and critical academic subjects.
  • Following a tender process to identify a suitable lead contractor, work to demolish the existing Senior School science block should start in early 2019.
  • We expect pupils to move into the new building in autumn 2020.
  • Included in the project are plans to improve the kitchen area and cafeteria in order to give an improved lunchtime experience for all pupils. These improvements are expected to happen over the summer holidays 2020.
  • Once the new Science, Music, Drama and Debating Centre is occupied, the temporary accommodation will be removed and the astroturf resurfaced.

The development forms phase 2 of our masterplan of significant investment in the future of Putney High School. Over the summer the Junior School playground was transformed and we are continuing landscaping work to improve the Junior School façade.

Throughout the project, our priority will be the wellbeing and education of our current pupils as well as ensuring that we are a good neighbour. We will use our considerable experience of managing building works to ensure minimal disruption to our pupils, including isolating the site to limit dust and noise. All work will be carefully scheduled, including avoiding examination times.

What can we expect from the new centre?

Cross curricular links are key to the learning journey at Putney High School. The building connects STEM subjects with the Arts. It will be a space where pupils and staff will want to come together to think, discuss, rehearse, perform and to be.

The Forum creates a space where students can relish the prospect of intellectual sparring. Student voice is paramount and debating is an important way of enabling girls to stand up for themselves in discussion and stand out in the future.

Music is central to school life, with students of all ages and abilities taking part in orchestras, choirs, vocal groups and ensembles. Bringing together the performing arts – next to the Performing Arts Centre – the ground floor of the centre will offer:

  • Acoustically engineered teaching and practice spaces for class, small group and one-to-one teaching
  • Purpose designed instrument storage for circa 190 instruments

The Drama department, on the first floor, will have a drama studio with professional ‘fringe theatre’ feel with:

  • Raked seating and flexible performance area
  • Specialist designed AV and lighting design
  • Dedicated technical hub
  • High performance, semi-sprung, activity floor
  • A new dedicated LAMDA studio

Practical teaching is at the heart of memorable, exciting and effective Science teaching. Located on the first, second and third floors, the Science department has been designed around this ethos, offering:

  • Nine state-of-the-art classrooms, all bright, naturally-lit and acoustically designed
  • Flexible spaces to allow teaching to be tailored to specific age group and subject topic
  • Cutting-edge equipment including mobile, 360 degree glass demonstration fume cupboards
  • Dedicated Sixth Form laboratory

There will of course be further updates as the project develops.

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