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3 tier system collapsing! what will happen next?

(44 Posts)
GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 10:54:09


it looks likely our school system here is going to collapse. when we moved here four years ago,the system had been apparently "saved" with parental backing and local mp's being involved. but now,its happening again....funding issues perhaps,not entirely sure,but there always seems to be someone saying we will lose it.

my question is.....what will happen in terms of the school buildings? we have a smallish lower school here in our village,and a lovely,large upper school,which is also sixth form college. the middle school is in the next village. and how do they merge? this is going to be very disruptive for our children....has anyone got any experience of how this is to be managed?

for the record,i think the 3 tier system has benefitted my dc enormously and would like it to stay. i will attend all the parents protest meetings to fight to keep our school system.....but i think it will be to no avail.

any thoughts?

LovelyRitaMeterMaid Fri 22-May-09 10:56:37

I know that in Oxford they had three tier and it is now 2 tier. I think the lower school mostly turned into primary schools, but I don't know what happened to middle and upper schools.

Where are you, roughly? We're in Bedfordshire which has a three tier system and when we moved here four years ago I'm sure there were discussions about it possibly changing (starting to wonder if you are in Beds too and there is something I don't know...)

epithet Fri 22-May-09 11:00:33

2 areas in my county still have the 3-tier system, but it is under threat in one of those - lots of parental anger and protest going on, but I think it's going to go, sadly. Mainly because of falling rolls in the area, and to save money.

I think it's a shame - I taught in 2 of the targeted middle schools, and they worked very well - you didn't have that awful Year 7 transition that is so difficult for many children. At 13/14, a bigger school is much easier to cope with imo.

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 11:03:00

am in beds Rita...south of bedford. we have had letters home about meetings and its all over local paper!

Epithet....i agree entirely. we are ex army,so moved around a bit and dc have been to quite a few schools,but once we joined the 3 tier system they have all thrived!!

LovelyRitaMeterMaid Fri 22-May-09 11:05:19

We're on the Beds/Herts border - now in Central Beds. I can't see that different parts of Bedfordshire would have different systems so am now really wondering if things might change here.

DS is in reception at the moment so no imminent change but am wondering what might happen.

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 11:09:25

i'm wondering and worrying! i have dc in yrs 10,8,6 (sen) and yr1. and a baby to start in few years.

our village lower isn't big enough to expand,its surrounded by houses so no extending. so a whole new primary would need to be built,and then i assume the upper school would become secondary.

really don't want dc education disrupted again,but looks inevitable.

LovelyRitaMeterMaid Fri 22-May-09 11:09:56

Have investigated and it looks like Bedford and Kempston. Seems odd to have different systems in different parts of the county

LovelyRitaMeterMaid Fri 22-May-09 11:11:47

HAve seen the consultation "would not affect schools in the part of the county run by Central Beds Council"

And that the change was proposed 3 years ago. I hope it does stay as a three tier system

karise Fri 22-May-09 14:06:08

As I understand it, the threat itself is enough to cause problems for some schools! Middles that think they are on the list for closure or being downgraded to a primary are being run into the ground now (as proved by the latest ofsted reports). Those in the catchment for these schools are having real problems knowing that when (not if) we go 2 tier our kids (currently year 2) will be stuck in a failing school from years 5-8 before it closes as our children leave!
Not saying which Middle because it will kill the house prices, but we really are stuck!

foreveroptimistic Fri 22-May-09 14:09:28

We live in an area with a 3 tier system, it seems to work well round here. Why is it failing in your area?

karise Fri 22-May-09 14:13:59

It's not, we have just had the threat of 2 tier over us for so many years by a hopeless local government that all the teachers are convinced it's going!

girlandboy Fri 22-May-09 14:16:22

There are murmurings about going to a 2 tier system in Leicestershire as well.

Our 3 tier seems ok.

karise Fri 22-May-09 14:23:49

It depends how easy it is to recruit good teachers! We have had difficulties for at least 5 years because teachers don't want to be stuck in the transition- especially if it is really obvious that if one school has to close it will be yours because your ofsted reports started dipping first!

karise Fri 22-May-09 14:25:02

We don't have room for 4 secondaries (currently 3 middles & 1 upper)

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 14:31:43

if some areas run 3 tier with no problems,then how come we are always under threat? is it really down to "funding"....our council has just re-structured,seems the schools are next target.

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 14:32:37

doesn't help matters when Nadine Dorries is your mp either!!

southeastastra Fri 22-May-09 14:33:48

they did that here. old middle schools are now housing estates. primary schools now over subscribed. doesn't make sense.

WynkenBlynkenandNod Fri 22-May-09 14:34:04

They are trying to do this in two of the LEAs surrounding the area (3 tier system) I live in, goodness knows what is happening. I've read what the proposals are for one area but don't know enough about those schools to understand exactly what they are proposing with the buildings.

I'll be livid if they mess with it here, it works brilliantly and I am really impressed, despite concerns about it at first (I grew up with 2 tier so it has all been very new to me. )

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 14:36:46

so nobody has anything positive to say on this subject? didn't think so. guess i was clutching at straws hoping there would be a good alternative!

FiveGoMadInDorset Fri 22-May-09 14:39:58

Ours i going 2 tier from 2011/2012 (hasn't been officially decided but seems to be a given)

moonmother Fri 22-May-09 14:47:10

I'm in South Bedfordshire, and we also have the 3 tier system.

We only moved here 2 years ago, from the next town that has the 2 tier system(it runs it's own council) and I have to say it has benefitted my DD enormously to. DD will be going up to middle school in Sept.

Have had no notice here of it changing, although if I remember there was talk of it a few years ago, although due to parents protests the idea of scrapping it was scrapped.

GypsyMoth Fri 22-May-09 14:49:15

moonmother.....keep an eye out for it. this time they mean it. you must be quite near me. am not sure where i live now since it was all restructured!!!!

DoNotAnnoy Fri 22-May-09 14:57:46

I am in Leicestershire - which is currently a mix of 2 tier and 3 tier - depending on area.

Primaries are all in local villages and tehn there is a middle school which has a ctachement of several villages and a high school which has a catchment of the same villages. I think that there is a proposal that the whole of Leicestershire will be 2 tier by 2016 (or somethign rediculous?).

I was assuming that the primaries will all stay as they are (the ones near us all go to Yr6 although I know some in teh county only go to year 5). Then I was assuming that the middle school would become a full secondary with 1 catchment area and the high school would become another secondary with another catchment area. Both schools have good facilities (sports, arts etc.) Surely teh capacity for 1200 pupils (or whatever) is already there - 600 in 1 school, 600 in another. It is just the year groups they teach at each school that has to change?

Personally I don't like the idea of changing schools at I am pleased about teh change. It is only a "feeling" though with nothing to back it up. My only concern is the potential for disruption just as my DTDs go through the middle/high school part of the system.

mumski Fri 22-May-09 15:19:34

Also in Leicestershire.
[don't get me started emoticon].
My DC are year 8 and 9.
So eldest is heading from one totally crap school to a even bigger crap school where she stands no chance of surviving academically.
If you are bright and focused you will do fine. But if you struggle, much evidence shows you will be lost in the system.

There are no standards maintained. School rules are ignored by children with no re enforcement from school. Some parents say 'well they are doing ok according to school league tables'. But then probably comparing dire with dire.
So feel a 2 tier system can't do any harm - it certainly can't be any worst!
Am I mad about situation - you bet I am.

mumski Fri 22-May-09 18:33:25


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