A space for youngsters with social or emotional mental health needs has been created for pupils at Romford’s Rise Park Academies.

The “sensory pod” is for disadvantaged and vulnerable children at Rise Park Infants and Juniors who need a quiet space to work during the school day.

A multi-use games area has also been laid out which is being used for lessons and competitive events like basketball, football and netball.

“These new amenities have enhanced the education for our pupils,” the schools’ executive headteacher Carolyn Fox said. “They ensure that the children benefit from the best possible learning during their time with us.”

The extra facilities have been praised by Ofsted inspectors, who judged the junior school to be 'good'.

The sensory pod and the multi-games area have been paid for by donations from the schools’ parent-teacher association and from the education trust that run the schools, adding to facilities like the schools’ own swimming pool and all-weather sports pitch.