First ‘net-zero’ school in Wales opens
Alex Seabrook, local democracy reporter
A new primary school opening in the Vale of Glamorgan has been called the “first net-zero school in Wales”.
South Point Primary School opened in Rhoose on Wednesday, March 2, after half term with capacity for 210 pupils and 48 part-time nursery places.
The £5-million school is replacing the former Llancarfan Primary School, a nearby village school which is controversially closing.
Vale of Glamorgan council said the new school building is “extremely environmentally friendly” and its design means carbon dioxide emissions will be “greatly reduced”.
Councillor Lis Burnett, cabinet member for education, said: “I popped into the school last week and it is absolutely gorgeous. I can’t wait to hear what the children think of it.
“This new school building will provide a modern teaching and learning environment for staff and pupils, as well as a range of facilities for the local community.”
The design includes solar panels with battery storage, an air source heat pump, electric vehicle charging points, storage space for bicycles and scooters, and green habitat areas.
Contractors ISG began building the school in January last year, which forms part of the council’s wider £135-million programme of new school buildings across the Vale.
Cllr Burnett added: “The council has made a climate commitment through our Project Zero initiative, which aims to make the organisation carbon neutral by 2030. Delivering schools like this, which are extremely environmentally friendly, is a key part of that pledge.
“This is the latest project in our Sustainable Communities for Learning programme, a far-reaching body of work intended to transform educational facilities across the Vale.”
Protests were sparked by the decision to relocate Llancarfan Primary School from its village setting five miles down the road to Rhoose, with some parents opposing what they saw as the closure of a rural school.
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