A Southampton primary school is celebrating a £3 million redevelopment.

St Monica Primary School in Sholing, which has 414 pupils, now boasts upgraded facilities thanks to a modernisation programme.

New and improved facilities benefit Reception and Year 1, and there are now two classrooms for Year 6 in a new modular building separate to the main building.

Lisa Marshall, executive principal, said: “We are all excited by the fresh feel of the school, with newly decorated interiors, new carpets and floors, new facilities for Reception and Year 1 and new classrooms for Year 6 in a standalone building which includes air conditioning.

“What we are seeing is youngsters taking pride in their new surroundings as they start out on a new school year – the enhancements further lift aspirations and the strong sense of feeling valued.”

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Southampton’s Lord Mayor, Cllr Valerie Laurent, attended a celebration assembly before cutting the ribbon to declare the new facilities officially open.

Speaking on the opening, she said: "I was delighted to open the new building at St Monica’s School.

"This was a very special event of which the children were obviously proud of their school and new building.

"I had the pleasure of cutting the ribbon held on the entrance path by two pupils, an exciting moment for us all.

"I congratulate everyone on this fantastic achievement."

Cllr Laurent was provided the opportunity to tour the school and view the new classrooms.

She said: "The rooms are light and airy, beautifully designed for interactive learning.

"Children were enjoying their classes, composition of poetry with flair and imagination.

"An important feature of learning is obviously the great space provided to inspire children.

"I really enjoyed my visit and hope to welcome them to come see the Civic Centre and the Mayor’s Parlour soon."

The £3m redevelopment comes after the school was praised in a quality assurance review by a national education charity earlier this year.

London-based Challenge Partners cited how far the school has developed since converting to an academy with Inspire Learning Partnership in April 2022.

Part of the review stated that children are ‘proud of their school’ and ‘feel appreciated and supported by all the adults’, that the school has ‘a calm, purposeful and positive learning environment’.

Inspire Learning Partnership is a multi-academy trust which oversees five schools and a nursery in the Southampton and Waterside areas, with a total of 1,553 pupils and 64 pre-school children.

The primary school in Bay Road was rated 'inadequate' by Ofsted in 2019. 

It was previously scored as either 'satisfactory' or 'requires improvement' from 2006 onwards.