A BOURNEMOUTH grammar school will expand and will admit more disadvantaged pupils following a successful bid for government cash.

Bournemouth School has been awarded £3.9 million which will be used to provide more classrooms, new enlarged dining facilities and additional toilets.

The East Way school currently admits 150 boys into Year 7 each year but the new facilities will see the number rise to 180 in September next year and 210 by September 2021.

Admission policies have recently been changed and have seen more disadvantaged pupils and boys from the local area given places at the over-subscribed school.

The school was awarded the money after making a bid to the Selective Schools’ Expansion Fund.

Following a rigorous assessment process, the Department for Education has approved 16 projects an an overall value of £49.3 million.

Headmaster, Dr Dorian Lewis, said: “I am delighted with the news. The funding secured represents the most significant capital investment in Bournemouth School for decades.

“Our students deserve to be educated in a modern, fit-for-purpose environment, and the work that we will now be able to undertake will be the first phase of securing this for them. We have some exciting and ambitious plans to extend working alongside local schools to improve the life chances of the young people whom we all serve.”

Chair of Governors David Sidwick added: “The governors in the last few years changed the vision of the school to ensure it truly is an engine for social mobility and integrated with the local community.”

The school is graded Outstanding by Ofsted and has a track record of high academic achievement.

Changes to the school’s admissions policy have already led to a change in the profile of the school’s Year 7 intake.

In September this year, 10 per cent of the Year 7 intake were eligible for the pupil premium grant, well above the national figure of 3.1 per cent for selective schools.

A huge 93 per cent of the school’s intake were Bournemouth residents.

The school will also extend partnership working with local primary and non-selective secondary schools to ensure that a higher proportion of students, but especially those who are disadvantaged, have access to an academic and stretching curriculum and qualifications to equip them for higher education and future careers.