Cleves School expansion(42 Posts)
Does anyone know anything about the Cleves School expansion plans?
We chose to live in Oatlands, Weybridge, assuming we could use Oatlands Infants School from 4-7 years old, and then Cleves from 7-11 years old, both Outstanding Ofsteds.
But now Cleves is proposing to expand to a massive 5 classes a year, from 4-11, over 1000 pupils in total??? Leaving children at lovely, lovely Oatlands Infants School with nowhere to go at 7.
I don't think my 4 year old would cope with a school of that size? But you would have to go to Cleves Infants, to be sure of a place at 7+.
I don't know anyone who is supporting the proposals, but there must be supporters (and reasons for their support) or presumably no-one would have proposed it in the first place.
Does anyone out there know anything more about this???? We have just submitted our "response letter" to Cleves Governors, protesting the plans, but the whole thing still just seems so strange, and so "not thought through properly".
I would post in "local" but there isn't one covering our area.
Just had to post here, Oatlands and Cleves are my old schools! So strange to hear them being talked about. In my day Cleves was utterly dire, it really could not have been worse, but it has improved SO much.
Its also funny because in my day Oatlands was a far better school than cleves. Do they stll have that statue in the playground of oatlands? I remember I got into lots of trouble for picking off the letters on it....sorry totally off the point I know.
I realise that alot of people have moved to the area, which is very expensive, to get into cleves, so real shame they are making a major change that effects Oatlands :-(
Latest update above.
The school didn't consult properly over the change to academy status either.
A thorough investigation into this also needs to take into how this school is run.
Cleves seems to think it can proceed without regard to the law (IMO).
Latest offering from Cleves' website below confirming this is ALL about money NOT what is in the best interests of the children & community.
23rd May 2012 Last updated at 14:59
Cleves Primary Proposals
We write to respond to some of the concerns raised at the recent public meeting. Please note Cleves School was not officially invited.
Whilst there is vast speculation about Cleves expansion plans, there is a matter which has been greatly overlooked. Surreys growth plans could potentially impact adversely on Cleves, which means that Cleves would start to shrink in size from September 2014. There are not enough children from Oatlands and Manby Lodge to fill 5 forms at Cleves. We need at least 190 applications to be full in September.
We are sure that parents would want our ethos of high expectations and inclusive community to continue and we would do this best by maintaining our current size.
Even as a four form entry school, several aspects of our provision would be at risk:
7 Residential visits 2 of them abroad
Specialist teaching in French and Music
Wide range of extra-curricular activities
An exciting innovative curriculum full of opportunity
The size of the school makes all of these things possible.
Cleves would like to reiterate that they have made a bid to a National Funding opportunity set up by the Education Funding Agency to expand and become a primary school, in line with Surrey policy. This has been an aspiration for several years and both Manby Lodge and Oatlands knew of our plans.
We are sure parents of Cleves School would feel delighted and lucky to have an outstanding local school that was willing to put in a huge amount of work required to take on an Infant Department. They would also benefit from the knowledge that their children belong to a thriving community at an early age, learning how to function within the community and observing the excellent role models of the older children.
They would be able to experience a broad range of opportunities, a wide range of sports, and an opportunity to take part in the performing arts to a high level.
Children can embrace the school ethos, which recognises children as individuals, allowing them to feel nurtured whilst challenging them, allowing them to develop skills to deal with any difficulties that lay ahead, in an age-appropriate setting.
We hope that parents would embrace the buildings that were fit for purpose and the curriculum that was matched to C21 demands and requirements.
Cleves is an excellent Junior School; it will be a fantastic Primary School. We would not allow it to be anything else.
Why do you need 190 applications to fill 5 classes? ie 150 places.
Well, they're not that good at sums.
I think it would be a great improvement if it were a smaller school.
There would still be French and it has been offered at Cleves since at least 1980s.
Further, there would still be residential trips - always has been.
How are 'numbers' necessary for an "exciting curriculum full of opportunity"? Can't believe they are putting their teachers down like this. Surely that what all schools have a duty to provide small or large? Cleves teach the same old thing tear in and year out - much of it very stale (Freudian slip!).
Opportunities in the performing arts for the same favoured children every year
This is about money and I suspect the school is over committed. Needs a thorough investigation but as it's now an academy that's not going to happen.
You need more applications than places because not everybody will put you as their first choice. Application numbers count all the people who put you 2nd and 3rd as well but who may well end up going to their 1st choice school elsewhere.
I thought a lot of these plans were to do with Cleves being located technically in Weybridge but much closer to Walton and Hersham where there is a shortage of places. There seems a general move in the area to turn Infant Schools into larger primary schools to meet demand. I guess they have to put a positive gloss on the benefits of being a bigger school (continuity, French and school trips) but in reality, a lot of changes are just driven by a necessity to increase the number of places.
I don't understand how they can say that there wouldn't be enough children from Oatlands and Manby who have 3 and 2 form entries ie 5 altogether! A perfect fit!
By closing either an infants or a junior school and converting the other into a primary you have land to sell off and save on senior staff salaries - only one head, one deputy head, less admin staff, one library etc etc etc
Tis all about money - economies of scale.
it's been turned down by the look of it.
Not sure the OP is still around.
That's brilliant news!
However, don't think Cleves will give up that easily. They think the won't be financially sound in future & (IMO) unable to fund prior commitments. Watch this space.
Draft admission policy for Cleves for 2014 published today for consultation - has children in yr 2 at Manby as next on the list after siblings, in effect making Manby a feeder? Look at the 2014 draft policy - link is on RH side of this page
What about Oatland's children?!
Children of staff!
Holding their own appeals!
Children of staff gaining priority is something that can now apply to all schools. As of February 2012, schools are allowed to choose to priorotise children of staff who meet certain criteria (normally 2 year contract or filling a specialist role).
Many schools have adopted this and it is unlikely to have a huge effect unless staff leave after securing a place in future years.
The school won't be doing their own appeals - they will be processing the paperwork to pass it on to an independant panel. All appeals are held by independent bodies but where a school is an academy not council controlled they have to either do the paperwork themselves or buy this service back from the council.
As to the issue of feeder schools / priority schools - that is something that the consultation period is designed to invite views on and gauge opinion on. Depending on the local set-up and the alternatives for Manby pupils, it may or may not have support.
Cleves NEVER consult in any meaningful way. They are simply NOT interested in anybody's views but their own. They didn't do so over the change to academy status and look at the so-called expansion consultation: fiasco. Whether or not it has 'support' will be irrelevant to the school.
Expansion was rejected.
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