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EKC Sheppey College not accepting new junior pupils until Levelling Up Fund extension complete

A college has confirmed it will not be accepting a new year group until it has undergone a multi-million-pound extension.

The EKC Sheppey College, in Sheerness, has said it is unable to deliver its new junior college provision for 14 to 16-year-olds as it “simply doesn’t have space”.

Sheppey College. Picture: Google Maps
Sheppey College. Picture: Google Maps

The Junior College has never been delivered at EKC Sheppey College before and will be a brand new provision when it’s launched in September 2025.

However, it has been successfully run elsewhere at EKC Broadstairs College, EKC Canterbury College and EKC Folkestone College.

The curriculum is core GCSEs, with a technical or vocational subject on top.

On Wednesday, Mike Whiting, Kent County Council councillor for Swale West, shared that the East Kent College Group (EKC) had written to parents who had applied for a place for their children at the junior college for September 2024.

An extract from the email read: "Following careful consideration, our group has decided to postpone the delivery of its junior college provision until its dedicated new centre is built at the main EKC Sheppey College site as part of the Swale Levelling Up Fund bid. “

CGI images have revealed the plans for the Sheppey College expansion. Picture: EKC/ SBC
CGI images have revealed the plans for the Sheppey College expansion. Picture: EKC/ SBC

Last month EKC unveiled draft plans for a multi-million-pound extension at the college.

It is one of three schemes, making up a £20 million project to help revive Sheerness that was put together by Swale council after it successfully bid for funding from the government’s Levelling Up Fund.

The extension will provide more places for students at the Bridge Road facility and an expanded curriculum to give opportunities for careers in key industries.

The newly-developed curriculum will focus on 16 to 19-year-olds and will offer creative, engineering and logistics courses.

This extension is just one of a handful of other schemes that make up the Sheerness Revival Project.

Graham Razey. Picture: EKC Group
Graham Razey. Picture: EKC Group

New and improved leisure and health facilities are being created at Beachfields, including soft play, adventure golf, TAG active, a new café and outdoor gym, while refurbishments have been made at Masters House to provide space and support for young people to start their own businesses.

Graham Razey, chief executive officer at EKC, said: “Our Sheppey College is going from strength to strength, and we continue to proudly celebrate our recent Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ grading.

“We’ve had a brilliant response from the community to our recent open days, and are looking forward to welcoming students to the college for the forthcoming academic year in September.

“We have also recently submitted our planning application for the new Levelling Up funded extension to the college, which will expand the footprint of the site and enable us to offer an enhanced curriculum for the community we serve.

“Unfortunately, this year we are unable to deliver our new junior college provision for 14 to 16-year-olds because we simply don’t have space in the existing building due to the number of students who want to learn with us.

“However, we’re looking forward to delivering an inspirational and Ofsted Outstanding education for this cohort when the new capital development is finished for the September 2025 academic year.”

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