EDUCATION bosses are planning for a new £16 million primary school to serve Glasgow’s city centre.

The city’s Executive Director of Education said the scheme was at the very early stages but there are hopes concrete plans will be ready by this time next year.

Maureen McKenna said the new school, to potentially be sited at Laurieston, would help relieve pressure on busy primary schools in Govanhill.

She said: “It is a great, good news story that our schools are getting busier and that they are great places for our children to go to.”

Glasgow City Council previously revealed plans to create new nursery provision at the “exceptionally busy” Cuthbertson Primary in Govanhill.

A nursery is being built on the blaze pitch there, which will free up two classrooms in the main school building and create 60 extra places.

The South Side community’s schools are feeling the pressure of serving the busy local community.

There was a suggestion from Ms McKenna that school catchment areas will also be looked at.

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She said: “Cuthbertson catchment area stretches from Govanhill right down to the river at Laurieston but we know the families at Laurieston don’t look up towards Cuthbertson naturally as a school they want to go to.

“We have to take into account what parents want.

“These catchment areas have been in place for a very, very long time so we have been looking at that and are going to speak to New Gorbals HA because they have good intelligence about what families want to do.

“At the moment it seems that families [in Laurieston] are wanting to go to Blackfriars and St Francis, which is causing additional pressure there, particularly at St Francis with the Oatlands development.

“So we are in the process of developing an Estate Strategy 2020 to 2030 and in that we are proposing a new city centre school.

“That school, in my view, should be placed in that development in Laurieston so we are looking in different spaces that could be used there.”

At Blackfriars and St Francis primaries in the Gorbals pressure on class sizes is being relieved by the use of modular accommodation.

But, with increasing numbers of new housing in Laurieston, an additional primary school is needed there.

Ms McKenna revealed the news at a meeting of the Govanhill Regeneration Group.

She told the meeting there isn’t sufficient spare land in Govanhill to build a new school.

The council has also looked at the Tradeston area but air quality there is poor.

The education chief said “very serious” pre-engagement would take place before any statutory consultation, which, it is hoped, would be ready for August to December next year.

A Glasgow City Council spokeswoman said: “As school rolls rise across the city our officers are at the early stages of looking at a range of options to meet demand across the city.

“The reputation of our schools is at an all-time high and this is excellent news for learning and teaching in Glasgow.”

The news comes after the council announced a disused school building could be the site of Glasgow's fourth Gaelic primary.

A £16.5m plan has been proposed to use St James Primary in Calton.