An ambitious plan to attach 'resource bases' for children with special needs at four schools across the Royal Borough has been agreed by councillors.

At last night's cabinet meeting members unanimously supported the £1.227million plan to establish the bases at Dedworth Green First and Middle Schools in Windsor and at Furze Platt Primary School, Maidenhead by September 2021 - with the remaining two to be set up at Wraysbury Primary School and South Ascot Village Primary School by September 2022.

An original shortlist of six schools was whittled down after a public consultation during the summer and a more detailed consultation period will now follow.

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Cllr Stuart Carroll - the council's lead member for children's services - told colleagues that the Government would meet the cost of the new facilities.

He said: "At the heart of this we are supporting disadvantaged children who are vulnerable.

"We are doing everything we possibly can to ensure that their life chances are maximised."

He said that enabling children with special needs to attend school within the borough without having to be educated away from their communities and friends was a top priority.

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*Councillors have also been looking at ways to expand schools in the borough in the years to come to take account of a growing population.

Cabinet members received a detailed breakdown of how schools could be expanded.

Eye watering suggestions include a possible increase at The Windsor Boys School from 810 to 1,350 or at Trevelyan Middle School from 600 to 720.

But children's services officer Kevin McDaniel emphasised that no definitive decisions were being taken at the moment.

He warned that the controversial issue of whether Windsor's three tier education system should be changed to match the two tier system elsewhere in the borough could well come up again - previous attempts to do this have met with ferocious opposition from parents.

Lead member for planning Cllr David Coppinger pointed out that the future of schools would be a vital part of the forthcoming Royal Borough plan which is due to take the borough forward for the next 13 years.

He said: "The provision of school places to our expanding population is absolutely essential."