New school building for Church school in Tonbridge

The first Church of England School in Tonbridge, Kent, has moved into its new school building.

Pupils at Bishop Chavasse Church of England Primary School, part of the Tenax Schools Trust (a Church of England multi-academy trust (MAT), were welcomed into their new building after the Easter break by headteacher Donna Weeks 

She says: “It is a rare opportunity as a Headteacher to be able to be part of the process to shape the design of a brand new school. 

But being so closely involved in the creation of the new building has enabled me to ensure that our children and the community have a bright and spacious purpose-built C of E School, with stunning outdoor spaces, which include a prayer garden."

The school first opened its doors to pupils in September 2017 whilst housed in temporary accommodation.

The new school provides outstanding provision with specialist classrooms for food technology, nurture, themed group spaces, reflection areas and an inspiring library, in addition to spacious classrooms for every year group. 

Donna Weeks says: "What has been created is a calm and spacious learning environment which provides great opportunities for learning both inside and outside the classrooms which will ensure that we are able to focus on the development of every child, enabling everyone to fulfil their potential and achieve excellence."

The support of the parents and local community has been key.

Parent Hughie Stein commented that the new school facilities are fantastic: "I know that this will enhance the already outstanding educational experience that our daughter Morgan already had at Bishop Chavasse.

"Mrs Weeks and her team have never wavered in their commitment to making sure that the new building is the very best because that’s what the children deserve."

The children spent their first day in the school exploring their classrooms and new surroundings, including the school hall.

This means that the school can now come together every day for their act of worship, something they have had to within classrooms previously as they had not had a hall within their temporary accommodation. 

James in Year R, who walked the length of the school corridor from his classroom to the school hall, which to a five year old not used to corridors in schools, seems a long distance, commented that he ‘liked the hall and being with his friends for their act of worship, but the walk made his legs ache!’

Whilst Sebastian, Year 1, gave the library a big thumbs up, commenting on how he ‘Loves the new library because it’s awesome! It has lots of hiding spaces to sit and read a book. It is really, really colourful, I love it’.

The school are now looking forward to the Rt Rev. Bishop James Langstaff officially opening their new school building in June.    

Copyright 2015 © The Diocese of Rochester. Registered Office: St Nicholas’ Church, Boley Hill, Rochester, Kent, ME1 1SL. Registered Charity No. 249339 The Rochester Diocesan Society and Board of Finance is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England No. 140656