Academy building is officially opened

Morley Newlands Primary's official opening of new building - MP Ed Balls and Adrian Stygall (principal).
Morley Newlands Primary's official opening of new building - MP Ed Balls and Adrian Stygall (principal).

Stirring speeches and sing-a-longs resonated during the official opening of Morley Newlands Academy’s new building.

MP Ed Balls, Mayor of Morley Wyn Kidger, guests and children packed 
into the school in Wide Lane on Friday.

Headteacher Adrian Stygall said: “Now we’ve got a fantastic new building, the children have got to work hard and do their very best. The goal now has got to be us being an outstanding school.

“It went very, very well and we’ve had lots of compliments about the children sitting well in the ceremony.”

The school recently became the first primary in Morley to be converted into an academy.

It has joined forces with the Gorse Academies Trust – which oversees Morley Academy, Bruntcliffe School and the recently-opened Ruth Gorse Academy.

The new building, which was designed by John Elliott, has been used by the school’s 520 pupils since September.

It includes 21 classrooms, a conservatory, two halls which will open out into one big room and a community hub which can be used by groups from outside the school.

A lengthy push for redevelopment by the governors succeeded in 2012 and the new facility was built over 11 months.

Coun Kidger, who is a Morley Newlands governor, said: “I was really proud and honoured to be there. It’s a beautiful new school.

“They are such dedicated staff and it’s what the children deserve after all the years of campaigning we’ve done.”

She also contributed £100 from her mayoral charity for the school to buy books.

Speeches were made by the school’s head boy and girl and their deputies , Coun Kidger and Mr Balls, who also unveiled a celebratory plaque.

Pupils also joined together to perform I Can Sing A Rainbow, using British Sign Language alongside the words to represent the school’s inclusive ethos. Their orchestra and choir also entertained guests during the ceremony.

Morley and Outwood MP Ed Balls said: “It was a real honour to formally open Morley Newlands. Having the chance to open a new school is one of the great pleasures of being a Member of Parliament.

“And from the opening song, Everybody’s Building, to the finalé with I Can Sing a Rainbow, being sung and signed by the entire school, it was a great ceremony and the Morley Newlands children were brilliant.

“Congratulations to everyone on delivering such a fantastic new school for children in our area.”