The name of a new school in east Suffolk catering for scores of pupils with communication and interaction needs has been unveiled ahead of its opening in September.

The East Anglian Schools Trust (EAST) has announced the school planned for the former Bungay Middle School site in Hillside Road, which will take around 80 pupils aged between nine and 16, will be called Castle EAST School.

It will be the second school opening in the county dedicated to pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) specifically around communication and interaction, and represents the fourth school for EAST following Bungay, Farlingaye and Kesgrave high schools.

Louise Franks, chairman of the EAST trust board, said: "EAST was established to meet the needs of local children, to develop a passion for learning and build resilient, confident learners.

"We feel privileged to have been chosen to sponsor the new communication and interaction school.

"We recognise that with this honour comes a huge responsibility and are delighted to be able to create this much needed resource, helping our local authority partners to offer learners access to an education suited to their needs."

Eastern Daily Press: Angelo Goduti, chief executive of the East Anglian Schools Trust (EAST)Angelo Goduti, chief executive of the East Anglian Schools Trust (EAST) (Image: Bungay High School)

The school will provide specialist support for youngsters who struggle with communication, which can be for a host of different issues such as struggling to get their words out, understanding social frameworks or not understanding what is being said to them.

Trust chief executive Angelo Goduti said: "This is an absolutely crucial development for supporting individuals with significant communication and interaction needs in Suffolk.

"It provides the much-needed specialist support to children who may have struggled in the past to access it and is a genuinely inclusive offer for students who may be experiencing very difficult circumstances.

"Castle EAST School is extremely exciting for the educational landscape in the region and will make such a significant impact on the life chances of children in Suffolk."

Work to revamp the old middle school site begins this month, while a consultation for the public to respond to the proposals is open online now until February 12. A headteacher has also been appointed.

The school is one of a number in the pipeline to address the high demand for SEND places in the county, which also includes new SEND schools being constructed in Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds to open in 2022, as well as a host of new specialist units attached to mainstream schools.

Eastern Daily Press: Suffolk County Council cabinet member for education, Mary EvansSuffolk County Council cabinet member for education, Mary Evans (Image: Archant)

Suffolk County Council cabinet member for education, Mary Evans, said: "We are looking forward to working with EAST to develop this new school which is an exciting and important element in Suffolk's programme to transform SEND provision in Suffolk.

"The new school will complement new specialist units being developed across the county and will mean that, for the first time, children with communication and interaction needs in north Suffolk will have bespoke provision available to them in their local community."

To take part in the consultation and to find out more visit the trust webpage here.