The Bubbly Flows as City School Is Singled out as Icon of Design; EDUCATION

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Byline: By Nicola Fahey

The Champagne flowed at a Birmingham school as it celebrated its new status as one of the city's iconic buildings.

Perry Beeches School welcomed back the people behind its regeneration to celebrate its landmark achievement - it is the only state secondary school to feature in Birmingham: Shaping the City, a book compiled by the Royal Institute of British Architects to commemorates the city's most iconic structures.

Headteacher of the Great Barr school, Liam Nolan, said: "Our city has a list of landmark buildings and Perry Beeches School has been included in that list.

"But it is really important we remember this building is not just an aesthetically pleasing work of art but a live, dynamic, vibrant structure that serves the young people and community of Great Barr."

The school saw its reputation enhanced under a Private Finance Initiative deal worth pounds 16.5 million, and as part of a larger pounds 38 million contract with Birmingham City Council for 10 schools.

In a keynote address at the school, city council leader Mike Whitby praised it for its dramatic improvement since its complete rebuild in 2002.

He said it would act as a flagship model for regeneration in light of the Government's pounds 45 billion pledge to rebuild every state school in the country by 2020.

"Perry Beeches School is a testament to the successful partnership of the public and private sector in creating public service developments," he said. …