Multi-million pound expansion to arts space

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The arts will now be firmly in the heart of an east London school thanks to a multi-million-pound expansion.

The investment means students at the Robert Clack School in Dagenham whose motto ‘for the brave nothing is difficult’, will be able enjoy a new space dedicated to drama and music, built as part of a £6 million refit which includes 17 new classrooms and a sixth form room.

Tom Mather of Be First and Mike O’Dell of Mid-Group met with Headteacher Russell Taylor on March 14 to see how the pupils are enjoying their new arts space.

Headteacher Mr Taylor said: “Some years ago Robert Clack School agreed to expand in order to support the council in providing more school places for the young people of our borough.

“As a heavily oversubscribed school, we are pleased that our new buildings and facilities mean that more children can now be offered a place
at their first-choice school.

“Robert Clack has always been committed to providing a broad and balanced curriculum, which includes a recognition of the importance of the arts, music and drama.
“We are delighted that as part of this expansion programme we now have world class facilities to support our pupils’ world class talents!”

Councillor Evelyn Carpenter, the council’s Cabinet Member for Educational Attainment and School Improvement, said: “We are expanding excellent schools like Robert Clack with the result that more parents in our borough are able to get their first choice of school for their child than anywhere else in London.

Values

“And on top of this, more students are getting into the top Russell Group universities than ever before.”

Tom Mather, Construction Director for Be First, which advised on the expansion, said: “Be First is not just about building affordable homes for local people, we’re also helping to build communities and great schools like Robert Clack.

Mike O’Dell of Mid-Group, who built the new school buildings, said: “We’re proud to be part of building a brave school like Robert Clack. They are building lives and communities with their progressive outlook and values.

“The development also includes refurbishment, extension and remodeling of the dining hall, school entrance, reception and administration area.

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