Rhyl Regeneration: School improvements
Denbighshire in partnership with the Welsh Government through the 21st Century Schools Programme has invested over £47 million to transform teaching and learning for secondary aged pupils in the town.
The need to change education delivery in the town was seen as a key priority with learning in the two secondary schools in the town previously being delivered from buildings generally in poor condition.
Rhyl High School
The £24 million redevelopment of Rhyl High School in North Wales was completed in 2016.
In 2013, Denbighshire County Council announced plans to create a new state-of-the-art facility which would seek to provide the best possible start for children and young people in a modern setting. Funding was received from the council and the Welsh Government to construct a three-storey building capable of accommodating 1,200 pupils from Rhyl High School with works commencing in the autumn of 2014. The building was also designed to provide a base for 45 pupils from the nearby Ysgol Tir Morfa community special school.
The new building includes sustainable features to achieve low operational costs over the lifecycle of school, while at the same time reducing carbon emissions through the use of biomass for heat and photovoltaics on the roof. The design is also aimed at achieving a BREEAM 'Excellent' rating. Outdoor facilities include hard and soft landscaped social areas for pupils, areas for outdoor learning, a multi-use games area, all-weather pitch and grassed pitches for summer and winter games.
Christ the Word Catholic School
A new approach to learning was formed with the opening of the new Christ the Word Catholic School in 2019.
A £23 million project saw the replacement of the former Ysgol Mair / St. Mary’s primary Catholic school and Blessed Edward Jones Catholic High School in the town of Rhyl with a new all through approach which would see pupils join Christ the Word at the age of 3 and potentially remain in the same school to the age of 16 completing their learning journey supported in the one environment.
The new school, for the Diocese of Wrexham, was funded in partnership by Denbighshire County Council and the Welsh Government, through its 21st Century Schools and Education Capital Programme. Christ the Word is an English medium faith school which hosts pre-school provision through a dedicated childcare offer, primary education for 420 full time pupils and 60 part time pupils aged 3-11 years old and then 500 pupils aged 11-16 in secondary provision.
The initial driver for change was the need to improve the teaching and learning facilities at both schools and the development of the all through approach has enabled sharing of the facilities between the age groups and closer working between all phases within the school.
The 2-storey facility, which was built in between the two former schools includes at it’s a heart a chapel and in addition to the Four-court sports hall, Main hall, Small hall, Drama studio and All-weather pitch includes specialist classrooms such as music, design technology, science and more.