South Bristol Schools Crisis

Offers for primary school places have been made for September 2014 and we are delighted that the local schools were able to accommodate all children living in the area. Many families got their first choice. Thank you to the Council and schools for their hard work.

The area now has sufficient reception places for all the children in the area. There has been strong support from the Council, with the acquisition of land for Ashton Gate and Southville to expand, and from the local schools which have expanded or taken on "bulge" classes when needed. There are also plans to create a new school on the caravan site near Spike Island, which should increase choice for BS3 families and help with the lack of places in the Hotwells and Clifton Wood areas.

We continue to monitor these developments and keep the community informed.

South Bristol Schools Campaign is a community-led group initially formed when there was a lack of local school places in BS3. It seems that long term solutions are now in place, so our role will now be limited to liaising with schools and the Council to ensure the delivery of promised new places and new sites, and to share information with the local community.

For the latest information, join the mailing list - this will allow the campaign group to quickly and easily inform and keep track of all those concerned.

You can also email the campaign group:

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Questions for Cllr Claire Campion-Smith

One of our parents, Lottie Storey, has received an email from Clare Campion-Smith, the Lib Dem councillor, suggesting a meeting with a small group of parents to feedback from Monday's Tobacco Factory meeting and to work towards a solution to the problem. This has been arranged for Tuesday 10th May, and will be attended by Lottie and three other parents involved in organising the Tobacco Factory meeting. It will hopefully be a prelude to a larger, fully public meeting with Clare and other councillors with regard to the situation. 

We would like to invite you, therefore, to post any questions you would like Lottie and co to put to Clare and her team on Tuesday. We stress that this is to be a very small meeting, at Clare's request, so not everyone will be able to attend. We will disseminate all the information that comes out of this meeting to the blog to keep everyone as fully informed as possible.

Please email us with your questions: or leave in the comments section below.


  1. Do the council think 8 miles of travel to and from primary school every day, within a city, is acceptable? I presume the answer is 'no', hence this meeting.

    Do the council make any effort at all to analyze local population data and pre-empt demand for primary school places? If yes, why have they got it so badly wrong? If no, will they now do so with some urgency?

  2. Many thanks for this.

    Without wishing to increase the burden on those who are preparing for and attending the session with C C-S, would it be possible for the intended questions to be posted on the blog in advance of the meeting? This could prompt further helpful questions from readers.



  3. Hi Douglas

    Yes - we're having a pre-meeting meeting today so can publish the questions we intend to ask CCS in advance of our meeting.


  4. 1. Does Cllr Campion-Smith think it is appropriate to send a four year old child away from his/her local community for schooling?

    2. Bristol's Community Cohesion Strategy says that "community cohesion is about everyone having an equal opportunity to participate in civic life and equal access to services. It is also concerned with building shared values between people, promoting integration (not assimilation), valuing difference and diversity and breaking down the barriers that create tension between people"

    Can Cllr Campion-Smith comment on the negative impact on a small community that proving places for some children in local schools and not others? In our opinion this will not only lead to children living on the same street not knowing each other (therefore making it difficult to build shared values, promote integration etc), but could also be a contributing factor to the build up of resentment and tension between families that have/have not been allocated a place on the basis of postcode.

    3. Bristol City Council's School Organisational Strategy acknowledges a shortage of primary school places for children in South 1 in 2011/12 and identifies some remediation of this in the years to come. For the children and families left without a place in a local school this year what undertaking can Cllr Campion-Smith give us that our children will have a place in a local school by September 2011?

    Good Luck tomorrow - thanks for doing this on our behalf!