Celebrations for the start of Construction on the new Castlebrae!

Norma Prentice (Head Teacher), Megan Douglas, Josh Heath and Sharon Street (Castlebrae’s longest serving member of staff) on the site of the new build to celebrate construction start.

An important milestone for the future of education in the Craigmillar area of Edinburgh has been reached as the start of construction work on a replacement Castlebrae High School was celebrated on Wednesday 15th January 2020.

Castlebrae students Megan Douglas, Josh Heath, Hamilton Cruikshank and Ahmed Khan joined parents, representatives from the City of Edinburgh Council, partners Hub South East and contractors Morrison Construction, at a special sod-cutting ceremony.

The £28m project, being delivered by Hub South East in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council, Project Managers Currie & Brown, JM Architects, Ramboll, Woolgar-Hunter, Doig Smith and Wardell Armstrong (Landscape Architects) with Morrison Construction the main contractor, will see the school due to be completed by August 2021. 

Plans for the brand new 700 capacity building, which has the potential to be increased to 1200, were developed after extensive consultation with educationalists, service users and the local community.

The new Castlebrae is being built in the heart of Craigmillar, next to the East Neighbourhood Centre and Library.  An important aspect of the design is the provision of a variety of spaces for learning activities to support collaborative and inclusive practice, developing and enhancing strategies for continuing improvement in attainment and achievement.

Externally there will be extensive landscaped areas for outdoor learning activities and a 3G artificial football pitch, which will be available for use by the local community outside school hours, as well as a community town square. 

Councillor Ian Perry, Education Convener of the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “It was great to see work progressing on the site of what will be our fifth new high school we have built in recent years. This is an exciting time for the education in the Capital with two further new schools opening this year, and construction work having started on two others.

“Today’s event demonstrates our commitment to investing in our children’s education by creating a first-class learning environment for all our children which will also be an exciting, inspirational and creative hub for the whole community.”

Councillor Alison Dickie, Education Vice Convener, said: “As a Council we are taking every opportunity to innovatively build schools for the future that are fit for 21st Century learning – as this exciting design shows with extensive landscaped areas for outdoor learning activities.

“The new schools we are creating all support greater accessibility and inclusion for all our young people. We will continue to develop the designs of our future school projects so they can support the needs of all learners and provide a much more inclusive environment promoting greater health and wellbeing.”

Head Teacher Norma Prentice said: “It’s so exciting to be the Head Teacher of the new high school for Craigmillar. This new build is thoroughly deserved and will benefit the whole community by delivering high quality learning and teaching and enhancing the school’s journey of continued improvement. All the pupils and staff can’t wait to move in next year.”

Richard Park, Director at Hub South East: “It’s exciting to mark the start of construction on site at Castlebrae. In particular, we’re delighted to welcome two S3 school pupils Ahmed and Hamilton, as they learn about communications and PR as part of their World of Work Week.

“This is a great example of how a construction project can provide wider community benefits and we look forward to working with the Council and our supply chain to ensure the project is delivered successfully, realising positive benefits for the local area, as well as the staff and pupils who will enjoy the new, modern facility.”

Eddie Robertson, Managing Director for Morrison Construction Central Building, said: “The start of a new project is an exciting time for all involved and it’s good to note that we already have rapid progress on the groundwork for the new Castlebrae High School. Morrison Construction has a strong track record in developing and delivering education projects in partnership with City of Edinburgh Council and we will bring all that experience to bear in ensuring that the children of Craigmillar receive a school building to be proud of, while the wider community will be able to enjoy 21st century public facilities.

“We are also committed to a programme of exciting engagement activities that will benefit the pupils and surrounding community during this project.”

Construction Starts on the New Castlebrae!

We are delighted to announce that the Construction programme for the New Castlebrae is now underway!

This significant milestone in the project was reached when work on site started Monday 28th October, and our Community now have a very real sense of the new building and the prominent position it will take at the heart of the rapidly developing Craigmillar, with the opening date set as August 2021.

The Castlebrae Community are very thankful for the passionate support received from all of our parents and partners who have worked so closely with us to support the drive to improve outcomes for our young people.

We are in no doubt that the new Castlebrae will provide innovative, inspirational and exciting spaces for learning and teaching, as well as providing an environment that will be fully inclusive and welcoming for the whole community.

Additional information on the new Castlebrae can be found via this website and through Twitter #ReplacementCastlebrae2021

Planning for New Castlebrae Approved!

We are delighted to report that the Planning Application for the new Castlebrae, due to open August 2021, was unanimously approved at Council Committee on Wednesday 14th August, the first day of the new 2019/2020 session! What a way to welcome our community back – including our 80 S1 students, our highest S1 intake in years and double that of last year!

Make sure you keep up to date with all the latest news on the new building (with construction beginning later this year) by visiting the special Replacement Castlebrae area on this website.

News for the new 2019/20 Session!

A very warm welcome back to our young people for the start of the 2019/20 session, with a very special ‘hello’ to our new S1 – our largest intake in years and double last year’s intake.

The new session at Castlebrae has started very positively, with our new S1 intake being the largest in years and then (on the first day back for our students) came the news that the Planning Application for the new Castlebrae building (due to open in August 2021) had been approved.

Read more about the new Castlebrae 2021 here

At the end of the 2018/2019 session, we said farewell to Alan Murphy, our STEM Curriculum Leader for the past 7 years. We wish Alan all the best in his new role as Curriculum Leader of Maths at Ayr Academy, much closer to home!

We were delighted to welcome new colleagues to Castlebrae for this session and to welcome back Chris Hume who returns to Castlebrae following two years as Acting Depute Head at Queensferry High School. We also welcome back Jodi Clark in Support for Learning following Maternity Leave.

Our new members of staff are:

Matthew Hughes (Curriculum Leader, STEM)

Jessica Heatlie (STEM, Maths)

Maria del Carmen Saez-Martinez (STEM, CDT)

Cara Marquadt (Social Subjects & RMPE)

Ross Donaldson and Zoe Grant (Expressive Arts, Physical Education)

Lorna Coan (Support for Learning)

Kathryn Brack (Broad General Education Teacher)

It’s fantastic to welcome so many new colleagues to our amazing Community as we grow in numbers and plan ahead for the move to the new build. Exciting times for Castlebrae!

Frances Boxes Clever!

Huge congratulations to Frances Heath who has been selected to represent Team Scotland in the Boxing GB Championships in Wales this year!

Well done Frances!