New Paisley Grammar School plans to open by summer 2026
Plans for a new Paisley Grammar School are moving forward – with the state-of-the-art facility expected to be open by summer 2026, for the start of that year’s new school term.
The community campus will replace the existing Paisley Grammar School and will contain new facilities not possible on the current site, some of which will also be available for the wider community.
It will be built on vacant land near the town’s Renfrew Road within the site of a wider development to transform transport links in the north of Paisley, which will help create easier and safer access to the new school.
Councillors on the Education and Children’s Services Policy Board will next week receive an update on progress with the building – including the new planned opening date of August 2026.
The initial target opening date was December 2025 – but it was felt this would compromise the quality of the building programme, given current challenges affecting the global construction industry.
Moving the school in the summer rather than at Christmas or Easter also minimises disruption to pupils and staff, and removes any clashes with exams.
The community campus is being funded by the council and Scottish Futures Trust, as part of their nationwide Learning Estate Investment Programme.
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The council last year appointed international architects Ryder Architecture to lead the design team. They’ve since led a series of workshops with pupils, staff and parents to establish what they want from the new school, with the results used to shape the detailed design work now under way.
The school building will be a 21st-century environment for pupils, with benefits including outdoor PE facilities, new outdoor areas, and a modern set-up for subjects like IT, music and drama.
It will also be designed to support new ways to learn and teach – with breakout and other areas for group work and one-to-one teaching, while being fully accessible for pupils with mobility issues or additional support needs.
The location of the community campus will also allow closer co-operation with West College Scotland. It is expected construction work on the school will get under way in spring/summer 2024.
The new community campus will benefit from greatly-improved transport links being delivered through a major project to create new road, walking and cycling connections in the north of Paisley.
That includes a new east-west road and bridge across the White Cart River linking Inchinnan Road with Harbour Road and Renfrew Road, plus new safe walking and cycling routes including use of a former rail bridge to create a pedestrian and cycle underpass under Renfrew Road linking the new school with Gallowhill and the east of the town.
Councillor Emma Rodden, convener of the council’s Education and Children’s Services Board said: “The current Paisley Grammar building has served generations of pupils well over the decades and people will have fond memories of it, but it has become outdated, with no room to expand.
“Instead, the new community campus will be a modern learning environment with state-of-the-art facilities. And our vision is for it to be more than a school – it will be a facility the entire community can enjoy and benefit from.
“A lot of work has already gone in to understand the future needs of pupils and staff, and to design a building which delivers everything they will need in the decades ahead – and we’re sure people will be impressed with the results once that work is complete later this year.
“The new planned opening date of summer 2026 will give time for everyone involved to make sure that exciting vision is delivered on, and means the school can move at a time that best suits pupils and staff.
“The community campus will also benefit from the much wider development taking place to transform the road network in the north of Paisley. Crucially that will make access to the new community campus easier and safer for pupils who are walking or cycling to school, while taking traffic away from current main roads.”
For more information on the new Paisley School Community Campus, click here.