St Marys briefing for SEND families From Dorset Council

Vision for important site in Dorset

We have unveiled ambitious ideas to transform the St Mary’s site near Shaftesbury, to potentially provide better educational opportunities for Dorset children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. 

Our preferred option is to create a special school for approximately 280 children and young people, aged from 4-19 years, which would be the centrepiece of a wider inter-generational campus potentially offering educational and community facilities for Dorset children and adults. Our hope is that this facility could allow more pupils to receive educational provision closer to home. Dorset Council is also open to considering alternative uses for the site such as a respite care centre, a training and conferencing suite and an innovation centre for a start-up businesses.  

We want your views

We are asking families, local people and community groups to share their views. Dorset Council wants to work with families, local people and groups to make sure this important site benefits our community for generations to come. All views will be carefully considered before a final decision is made.  

Please complete the survey before it closes on 18 March 2021. If you are not online please call 01305 225088 for help and we will send you a paper copy. 

If you would like an Easy Read copy of the survey or have other questions please email: 

Read the latest news release about St Mary’s here.

Please keep in touch with the project by signing-up for the ‘St Mary’s Update’ enewsletter here.

St Mary’s live briefing: Monday 8 FebruaryPlease join us at 5:30pm on Monday 8 February for a live briefing session, where families can ask questions, with Theresa Leavy, Dorset Council Director of Children’s Services, Matt Prosser, Dorset Council Chief Executive, Cllr Spencer Flower, Leader of Dorset Council and Cllr Andrew Parry, Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Children, Education and Early Years. We hope you can join us, but don’t worry if you can’t, we will be sharing a recording of the briefing afterwards. 
Link to live session, please join the briefing from 5.30pm
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