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:

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Ashton Gate and Imperial Tobacco

Received today from Ashton Gate Primary School

18th April 2013
Re: Update on Ashton Gate’s expansion

Dear parents and carers,
I’m pleased to tell you that the Local Authority (LA) has now completed the purchase of property that can be used for the expansion of Ashton Gate. The acquisition of the Imperial Tobacco office building and car park will enable:
(1) A temporary annex installed on the car park to provide three forms of Reception entry (3FE) from
September 2013 (as reported to you in my letter of 22nd March).
(2) A new permanent school facility on Upton Road, through refurbishment of the Imperial office building and car park; this would enable a potential 4FE Reception entry from September 2015.
If everything proceeds according to the current plan, then the school would expand to 4FE, operating over a split site, as outlined in my letter to you in December. Specifically, from September 2015, the school would be structured as follows:

On the current Ashton Gate Road site: Early Years/Foundation Stage (EYFS) and Key Stage 1 (i.e., Nursery, Reception, Year 1, and Year 2),. The number of children on these premises will gradually expand to 4 classes in of the three year groups, eventually giving us 12 classes on the site (compared to 14 for a 2FE Primary school). (Governors have yet to decide if or when Nursery will be re-established after 2013, and we will keep you updated on this.)

At the new premises on Upton Road: Key Stage 2; by this time Years 3 and 4 will have 3 classes each. As the September 2015 intake of 4FE moves up through the school, the number of children at this site would expand to 4 classes in each of the four year groups: i.e., eventually, 16 classes in total, compared to 14 for a 2FE primary school. The Imperial building offers substantial space, and opportunities to create an excellent new teaching and learning environment. Although located a couple of blocks away, EYFS and KS1 will, of course, also benefit from the use of the new facilities.

Although the school would operate with an EYFS annex from next September, and as a split site from 2015, we will ensure close liaison between the two sites for both children and staff: we are committed to operating as one unified Primary school.

As I’ve mentioned before, to minimize the risk of the school committing to additional classes before new premises are actually ready, we will keep the temporary and permanent expansion projects under review. We will agree to admit additional classes only as availability of the facilities becomes certain beyond a reasonable doubt.

We will shortly provide you with a Frequently Asked Questions document that will go into more detail on these various issues, followed by meetings with parents to give you the chance to ask further questions and share your thoughts. In the meantime, please do contact me if you have any queries.
Lloyd Fletcher

To read the FAQs: Ashton Gate expansion FAQs

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