Free school wins planning approval for permanent home
Work is expected to begin soon on building a new free school in Roehampton. The Mosaic Jewish Primary School, which admitted its first 30 pupils last September will move from its existing temporary home in Wimbledon Parkside to a new purpose-built modern school building in Roehampton Lane.
Its classrooms are expected to open in September 2015 and the school will eventually cater for 420 pupils. Half of its intake will be Jewish but 50 per cent of places will be reserved for children of other faiths and beliefs and those from families who are not religious in any way.
The new school will also have a sports and community hall which will be open for use by the local community outside school hours. It will also generate some of its own electricity through the use of rooftop solar panels.
Shirley Lee, the Chair of Governors for MJPS said:
"We are delighted to be able to move to the next stage of realising our vision of a purpose built new school in Roehampton. Even after only one year MJPS has a wonderfully diverse pupil population which is a key element of our ethos."
A school bus service will operate from nearby transport links such as Barnes Station and busy local bus stops to reduce the number of cars that travel to the school. Around 80 pupils are expected to use this service each day. There will also be secure racks for up to 50 bicycles and 18 scooters.
A planning application for the new school was approved by the planning committee on August 14. It will replace the side annexes to Hartfield House, which was formerly operated by the council’s adult social services department as a respite care centre but was declared surplus to requirements in June 2012 as it was no longer considered fit for purpose.
The council say that the services formerly offered at Hartfield House have been transferred to a more modern property in Earlsfield which is much more suitable for the role and has benefited from a £280,000 refurbishment.
The switch is saving council tax payers £311,000 every year, while the money generated by the sale of the building to the school is available to fund future capital spending by the town hall.
Planning chairman Cllr Sarah McDermott said: “This is a well-designed and attractive school building that will sit well alongside the important architectural and historic asset that is Hartfield House.”
August 28, 2014