Parents and teachers are lobbying a council to win planning permission for their school’s multi-million pound new building.
St John the Evangelist Catholic Academy, in Kidsgrove, has been split across two sites a mile apart ever since families can remember.
Last year, they finally won Government funding to bring children onto a single site in Gloucester Road, where junior pupils are already based.
But now everything hinges on securing planning approval from Newcastle Borough Council. And highways officials are recommending the proposed new teaching block is rejected due to concerns about increased traffic levels outside the school.
Newman Catholic Collegiate, which oversees St John the Evangelist, believes the plans will actually reduce traffic as parents will no longer have to travel between two sites. Many live within walking distance of Gloucester Road.
The lower site in The Avenue, which caters for foundation stage and infant pupils, also has no parking and staff are forced to leave their cars in nearby roads.
Ian Beardmore, senior executive leader of the collegiate, said: “We’ve been battling for years and years to get this to happen.
“We are now at the point where we have the funding, the plans are drawn and parents can’t wait for the new building. But there’s just this one sticking point.”
The present infant site is also in dire need of replacement as the building is being pushed off its foundations by a failing retaining wall.
Headteacher Helen Rigby said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to provide the best new facilities for our young people, offering real benefit to the children who attend the school. We are so excited about this new chapter.”
The proposed new two-storey block would include classrooms, a multi-purpose hall, kitchen and office and support spaces. There would also be parking for staff and visitors, a dedicated nursery and reception playground, and a new pedestrian access.
Bev Hancock, from King Street, Kidsgrove, is one of the parents to write in support of the plans.
She said: “Having children attending this school, I will have to soon complete two drop-offs – one at each site. This means I will have to drive rather than walk.
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“There is absolutely no parking or access at The Avenue site. I fear it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident involving a child.”
Helen Copeland has seen the split-site problems from both a parent and member of staff’s point of view. She said: “The facilities are not what our children deserve. Locating the two sites together would provide huge benefits.”
Former Stoke-on-Trent North MP Joan Walley, who lobbied the Government for funding for the new building, is also backing the campaign. She said: “A new school of this standard will transform education provision for pupils.”
But Staffordshire County Council’s highways officials have written a letter objecting to the plans.
The letter states: “The traffic generated by the proposed development would be likely to result in an increase in highway danger for drivers and pedestrians at the school access, the zebra crossing and for drivers travelling on Gloucester Road.”
There have previously been complaints about vehicles being parked on zig-zag lines.
The planning application is due to be decided over the coming weeks.