Jarvis is already working in partnership with Kirklees on a grouped schools project which has delivered major investment to 20 schools across Kirklees. This is the second time in recent years that Kirklees has selected Jarvis as its partner and is the first time a single local authority has competitively selected as preferred bidder the same company which had undertaken the first PFI scheme.
A new school will be built at Newsome, to replace the existing facilities at Turnshaws & Highfields, and two further new schools will be built at Fairfield and Longley. Ravenshall School will benefit from major redevelopment and an extension of existing special school facilities.
Construction work is scheduled to begin in July 2004 for completion in June 2006. The development cost is expected to be in the region of £22m and the whole life value of the scheme is estimated at some £65m.
John Smithson, cabinet member for education at Kirklees MBC said: 'This decision gives the 'green light' for a new development programme that will transform the support and service we provide for children with special educational needs. On completion of this programme pupils in our special schools will benefit from a high quality education service in top class surroundings and buildings.
'After more than a decade of uncertainty, dithering and delays, we can now move quickly and positively forward to provide the services that this important group of young people have every right to expect and deserve. After tenders had been carefully and fully examined, the bid from Jarvis and Totty emerged the best in terms of content and value for money.'
Andrew Sutton, chief executive of Jarvis Accommodation Services, said: 'We are delighted that Kirklees has selected us as preferred bidder for a second schools project. We look forward to delivering the four high quality, brand new special educational needs schools in partnership with the council. We hope the project will greatly improve the quality of the teaching, learning and social environments in the council's special educational needs schools and will help to raise standards.'