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John Port Spencer opens new Post-16 building designed by former student

The building was designed by Thinking Buildings and will feature a café area, IT space and eco-friendly facilities. John Port Spencer Academy officially unveiled its new Post-16 building, designed by Thinking Buildings with support from former student Jess Moore.

The school celebrated its fantastic new Post-16 building with an opening event on 7 February with attendees from B&K, Thinking Buildings, Spencer Academies Trust, Derbyshire County Council, students and staff. The ribbon was cut by Jess Moore, a former student at John Port who is now part of the Thinking Buildings team. Jess was instrumental in the design of the building and said that coming back to open the facility filled her with a sense of pride and accomplishment that she has played a role in the next chapter of the school’s history.

 “John Port’s dedication to excellence and innovation is exemplified in this new building, in which spaces have been created to nurture innovation, from cutting edge classrooms equipped with the latest technology to vibrant communal areas designed to encourage social interaction and creativity,” she said. “Every aspect of this building has been tailored with the singular goal of fostering the minds and spirits of the students to prepare them for higher education.”

James Hutton, Director at Thinking Buildings, added, “Jess has made an important contribution to the development of the new Post-16 building. The experience, although a little odd for her at the start being an ex-pupil, has been really important for her professional development and enabled her to cement her development in architecture. I think it is really important for students to have their horizons broadened, to see where careers can lead you. Hopefully highlighting Jess’s achievements will show what is possible.”

Acting Principal Alison Vann said, "We have dedicated teachers and hardworking students with high aspirations. This new facility represents our commitment to providing excellence in education for our students and is a place where we can build community and sense of belonging.”

The Spencer Academies Trust would like to thank everyone who contributed to the project.