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Does anybody know about secondary schools in Forest Hill/Catford

(22 Posts)
otto Fri 22-Apr-05 14:48:28

We've seen a house we like near Forest Hill, but I don't know much about the schools in the area. From looking at upmystreet it seems as if there are plenty of primary schools, but little choice when it comes to secondary schools. In fact it seems as if there is only one non-independent school that accepts boys and that's Forest Hill.

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 14:50:24

Catford/Lewisham is not good from the point of view of state secondaries. In fact, a lot of SE London isn't (and I live there but not in Forest Hill).

otto Fri 22-Apr-05 14:54:40

I thought as much. That's probably why we can afford to buy there. Ds is only 13 months, so this isn't a major concern yet, but I doubt we'll be able to move again when it comes to getting him into a school. What are you going to do about school's Marina?

otto Fri 22-Apr-05 14:55:14

oops, no need for apostrophe in schools

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:00:49

Forest Hill has lots of other nice things going for it Otto We are in Greenwich, an under-performing borough even worse than Lewisham at secondary level.
To be honest, we moved further out to an affordable and less pretty suburb (30s semis where I live, not Victorian villas/terraces) near the border with Bexley in the hope that ours will sit the Bexley 11 plus and attend one of the grammars. But the non-selective schools in Bexley are also excellent. We are literally yards from that border. It's the norm in Greenwich to travel out of borough for 11 plus
Where you are looking, I think you would want to be as near to the Bromley border as you could afford, and hope for similar. Bromley also has some good selective and non-selective state secondaries.
Of course Lewisham does have some good state secondaries with high marks for value-added - Haberdashers CTS is co-ed and near New Cross/Brockley, Addey and Stanhope in Deptford. Haberdashers is appallingly oversubscribed

otto Fri 22-Apr-05 15:13:14

It's hopefless isn't it? This anxiety has been brought on by the problems that dp and his ex-wife are having with getting their dd into a school. Ex-wife has just bought a house in Telepgraph Hill so that my stepdaughter is in with a chance of getting into Habedashers. She's been told that you virtually have to live on the doorstep to get accepted. I think I'll have to put it the back of my mind and hope that the situation improves over the next 9 years.

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:16:46

There are big plans to build a new secondary school in Lewisham in that part of the borough, it's urgently needed.
As recently as six years ago friends of ours in Charlton (four miles away) got their ds's into Haberdashers. Things have clearly changed.
As it happens I was at Prendergast in its old downtown Catford location. I gather it's the same now in Brockley - same STREET or no chance. I travelled six miles on two buses and some girls even further!
I like SE London for many reasons but the schools situation is

otto Fri 22-Apr-05 15:31:16

I like SE London too. Interesting to hear that you live in a 30s semi. The house we like is a 30s semi with proper wooden windows and picture rails etc. A friend bought one in Clapham about 10 years ago and it really opened my eyes to that style of house. The only drawback seems to be the size of the kitchen and third bedroom, but as dp is a carpenter and can do most building jobs we're hoping to remedy that.

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:52:22

Ours is bigger than average (17ft sitting room, 15ft dining room, reasonable but still single 3rd bedroom) but still has an annoyingly small kitchen.
Dh saw ours and fell in love with room sizes and the big gardens the houses round here have. I was a 30s refusnik until then. And I do still hanker after either 30s/60s minimalism or Edwardian arts and crafts splendour, both of which are completely out of our £££ range.
They are so well-built. Ours has lost its original windows (we're working on this) and its stained-glass porthole door, but still has its original scalloped clay tile roof and pagoda-detailing on the porch. I think they are very under-rated, but the problem is they were usually built as large developments and road after road of them with little variation or funky inner-city shopping streets does get a bit scary!

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:53:41

I also think if we took up the pub carpets we inherited the boards would be of strippable quality. They sound good IYSWIM.

Dingle Fri 22-Apr-05 15:54:50

Hijack alert...hijack alert...Marina, if I were to say "knickers" to you, would you know what I mean????

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:55:54

You SAW! Cool, I know what you want missus. Consider it on the list. Is dd "petite" or "chunky" for her age?

Dingle Fri 22-Apr-05 16:01:26

You are a diamond! I will CAT you with details, I'd say about average size for age (3-4), nothing too fancy, perhaps white, pinks, or navy, not too expensive....and post you a cheque to cover it or at least some of it!!
Thank you, thank you, thank you...


hijack over!

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 16:02:13

Not going til end of May, though. Plenty of time. Glad to help.

otto Mon 25-Apr-05 12:51:25

It sounds lovely Marina. I hanker after an early Victorian, flat fronted terrace myself, but way out of our price range.

There is something a bit spooky about the suburban feel to the roads, but I can't see any other way of us getting a three-bed place in a decent area. The one we've found is pretty small, but it has advantages such as a garage that dp can turn into a workshop. Also, there's a definite nod to arts & crafts in some of the features such as the oak doors panelled interior doors. And it has original windows, but a horrible repro fireplace. I'm keeping my fingers crossed as we are yet to settle on an offer on our own place.

motherinferior Mon 25-Apr-05 12:57:39

Otto, I live in Catford and before that lived in Forest Hill. We are due a new secondary school by the time our lot reach that age, I know that.

Lewisham has been putting a fair bit of money into education overall. I know this sounds really, horribly slack, but I'm prepared to hang on and see what happens - after all, the much-condemned school at the end of my road has gone from special measures when we bought here four years ago, to above the national average in the league tables.

batters Mon 25-Apr-05 13:11:01

It is interesting so see how quickly some schools seem to turn around, from failing miserably to doing really well.......if you believe the league tables and Ofsted reports.

The primary school near us 4 years ago just escaped being on special measures. Ofsted wanted the school to go on special measures but it refused to and appealed. Two years later it had another Ofsted report - I could not believe the difference in the two reports. Another 2 years on and the school has gone from the bottom of the league tables to in the top half. Local parents are now choosing to send their kids to this school. So MI you are not being lax at all!

otto Mon 25-Apr-05 13:50:15

Thanks MI, that's very reassuring. Where do you live? The house we like is between Forest Hill and Catford, but closest to Forest Hill Station I think

Marina Mon 25-Apr-05 13:54:12

I don't think it's slack, MI, I think in Lewisham it is well worth a punt - much more so in Greenwich, where an otherwise well-intentioned and good Labour Council still has not got its act together on secondary education.

motherinferior Mon 25-Apr-05 14:03:08

I am closer to Catford station, Otto, despite the claims of one of my neighbours that this is 'the Forest Hill end of Catford'. I reckon we're a few streets down from where you're looking; our road is slightly older houses, going from very beaten-up at one end of the road (the end with the hostel) to the posh end (we live nearer the posh end - said neighbour lives right at the posh end). Nearest to Rathfern School. Do CAT me if you'd like to.

otto Mon 25-Apr-05 14:47:49

I will CAT you MI if we get this place as I don't know much about the area.

pootlepod Tue 03-May-05 19:37:37

I know parents with children at Forest Hill boys and they rate it, but feel it is due to the head, so when he leaves they are worried the reputation might go with him.

Have you seen \link{http://se23.com/ \this site?}

There is also a school called Sedgehill which I thought was co-ed but don't know the admission policy.

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