Street credibility

04.09.2009

First day for students at new school with a real difference

Students will go through the doors of their brand new school heralding a bright new future for education on Wearside.

The 11 to 16-year-old pupils at the £16million Castle View Enterprise Academy will literally be giving it a big ‘thumbs-up’ when they use thumb print identity to buy lunch at the restaurant and borrow library books.

The biometric system is just one small element of the newly-built academy which will provide 850 students with the latest education aids in an inspirational setting of striking modern architectural design. 

In addition to the up-to-the-minute classroom equipment for studies of traditional subjects - including £1.5million on more than 700 computer terminals and laptops - the academy has also been designated a centre for business and enterprise excellence.

It features its own ‘main street’ complete with shops, including a reward points store and a uniform outlet. There is a fully operational hair dressing saloon with 12 styling and cuttings stations, a dance and drama studio with wall to wall ceiling to floor mirrors, fully equipped technical workshops and a recording studio.

The students also have their own ‘in-the-round’ parliament debating chamber.

The new academy has been built on the site of the old Castle View school and the now-derelict buildings of the old school can currently be seen being demolished.

Reporters and photographers are invited to interview the Principal, Mrs Janet Bridges and students at the academy on Cartwright Road, Sunderland, SR5 3DX between 10.30 and 12noon on the first morning on Thursday 10 September.

Parental consent will be obtained for a group of students to facilitate filming and photographs. It is hoped that this will include seven-year-old twins and a brother and sister in the first and final years.

Northumbrian Water is the lead sponsor for the academy in a unique partnership under Sunderland City Council’s Building Schools for the Future programme.

Principal, Janet Bridges, said: “It has taken three years of work to get us to this historic first day in the new academy. Our partnership with Northumbrian Water is fundamental and the foundation on which it has been built.

“The company has been involved in all aspects of the planning, building and development of the academy and it will continue to be a constant partner working with all our students both inside and outside of the academy,” added Janet Bridges.

Even the academy ‘House’ names reflect the water company partnership – instead of Harry Potter Hogwart houses like Gryffindor, Slytherin and Hufflepuff, Castle View Academy students will compete for the end of year House Cup under the banners of the region’s best-loved reservoirs of Derwent, Fontburn and Kielder.

It is intended that the academy building and its attached Sports Centre - including swimming pool, fitness suit and sports hall - will also be used as a centre for the whole community of the Castle View area of Sunderland.

Additional planned community activities could include dance classes in the studios, catering training in the kitchens and beauty therapy in the Castle View Community and Fitness Centre.

John Cuthbert, Chair of the Academy Trust Board and Managing Director of Northumbrian Water, said: “this is a unique opportunity to provide a safe, secure and exciting learning environment where every student can achieve their personal best.

“Northumbrian Water is more than just a water and waste water treatment company – it is immersed in all aspects of community life and central to that is how we help our young people develop and grow.

“We are proud of the fact that our involvement as a company has supported the Government’s massive £16m investment in this community project and are excited about the opportunities it presents for local people.”

For further information and to register for the opening day morning contact Alistair Baker, Communications and PR Manager, Northumbrian Water on 0191-301-6851 or 07711-793-493.

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