Issue details

19/00061 - Following the amalgamation of the former Murston Infant and Junior Schools to establish Sunny Bank Primary School, relocation of Sunny Bank Infant and Nursery departments to Sunny Bank Junior department site, with infrastructure for an exp



Sunny Bank Primary School was established on 1 September 2016 when Murston Junior school and Murston Infant School and Maintained Nursery amalgamated. The new primary school opened in the existing accommodation of both schools and it wasenvisaged that in the longer term the Local Authority would pursue opportunities to bring the school together on one site that was in the ownership of KCC and support the school’s operation as an all-through primary school.


The KCP 2019-2023 identifies the need for additional places in the Sittingbourne East primary planning area. The expansion of Sunny Bank Primary by 0.5FE was identified to meet this need. A full feasibility was commissioned in 2018 to relocate the infant department and Nursery to the junior department site and provide the infrastructure to expand by 0.5FE to a 2FE primary school. This ensures that there are adequate places for children from new housing that is already being built out in close proximity to the school, as well as the future financial viability of Sunny Bank.


The current infant department was originally established in the 1860s and additional buildings were added over subsequent years. The buildings are in poor condition and the cost of maintaining the infant school site in order to ensure the buildings are fit for purpose would be considerable. The Infant buildings are on a site that is in the ownership of a local Diocesan Trust that comes under Canterbury Diocese. The lease costs are in the region of £ 20,000 per annum and are currently paid by KCC as the school would not be able to meet these costs and remain viable.The most cost-effective option is therefore to relocate the infant department to the junior site which is in the ownership of KCC and is of a sufficient size to accommodate all the buildings required for a 2fe primary school plus nursery.

Decision type: Key

Reason Key: Expenditure or savings of more than £1m;

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Division affected: Sittingbourne North;

Notice of proposed decision first published: 03/09/2019

Decision due: Not before 2nd Oct 2019 by Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Education
Reason: In order that the proposed decision can be published for a minimum of 28 days, in accordance with statutory requirement

Lead member: Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Education

Lead director: Keith Abbott

Department: Education & Young People's Services

Contact: Marisa White, Area Education Officer - East Kent 03000418794 Email: Tel: 01227 284407.


The decision was considered and endorsed at the Children’s, Young People and Education Cabinet Committee on 1 October 2019.

Financial implications: Capital Budget Costs A full feasibility has been undertaken for the relocation of Sunny Bank infant department and nursery onto the junior school site. The cost of relocation and refurbishment of the junior site has been estimated at £4.2m. Up to £2,500 is provided per new classroom for ICT equipment from the Capital budget. In the case of Sunny Bank this will provide up to £22,500 (subject to submission of invoices to evidence spend). Revenue Costs As per KCC policy, a total of £6,000 per new classroom for furniture will be provided from DSG. For Sunny Bank this will total £54,000. A total of £1,334,600.27 in Developer Contributions has been sought for the Sunny Bank Primary School project, £1,163,414.27 of which has been agreed and to date we have received £136,396.67.

Legal implications: Any legal implications will be identified in the report to the Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Education before he takes his decision to allocate £4.2m from the Children’s, Young People and Education Capital Budget

Equalities implications: An EqAI has been undertaken