A 'SUBSTANTIAL amount' of money has been secured to help repair and upgrade Sandown Bay Academy ahead of September, when it will re-open as a new school.

The AET Trust that ran the academy announced its closure last year, citing falling pupil numbers.

Sandown Bay Academy will close on August 31 and a new all-through school for students aged between four and 16 will open on September 1.

Speaking at an Isle of Wight Council cabinet meeting last night (Thursday), cabinet member for children's services, Cllr Paul Brading, said a team of officers visited the school to assess the state of the building.

He said works identified included repairing windows and parts of the roof, while a new heating system would be installed.

However, Cllr Brading said the visit did not raise any safety concerns for current students.

He said: "AET has spent no money on the premises and there is a substantial amount of money required to spend on the school prior to September.

"The money has been found and work will be done.

"A sizeable amount of money needs to be spent prior to September to make it even usable as a school."

Cllr Brading also revealed that a new leadership team had been recruited for the school.

"Only one of the older senior leadership team will be at the school," he said. 

"It's a very sleek team of five people and they are all ready to go."

A shortage of secondary experience on the governing body also meant four new governors had to be recruited.