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Primary School Admissions - South Croydon

(13 Posts)
Leoandme Tue 04-Oct-16 13:42:00

Hi All, I'm looking for some feedback on primary schools in South Croydon, there are three schools in my catchment area and I am going to make an appointment to look around them. I would be really grateful if anyone can offer any feedback on any of the primary schools in the South Croydon area particularly St Peters, Harris Academy Haling Park, Purley Oaks, Howard Primary and Heathfield. I'm not going to be able to get around to visiting six schools so I really hope we get one of our top 3! Also if anyone has any tips they can offer when it comes to the application/ selection of schools process. I feel like I'm not really as genned up as I need to be! TIA

codandchipstwice Tue 04-Oct-16 18:13:22

I do know some of these schools but from what I know you will no way be eligible for all of them so which are your nearest 3?

Roderickrules Tue 04-Oct-16 20:58:54

St.Peters and Howard both very hard to get into. I used to live in St.Peters Street and didn't get in.

Purley Oaks not great tbh.

Harris is new, the school is not filled yet iirc, you prob have a chance there.

Leoandme Tue 04-Oct-16 23:01:49

Nearest to us are in order Purley oaks, Harris and St. Peter's. I've been reading up on the admissions process tonight. I've got appointments tomorrow for St. Peter's and Harris. Fingers crossed. I have to put another 3 on my application, I'm stumped as to which to put down!

Seeline Wed 05-Oct-16 08:31:21

I am a bit out of touch as my DC are now secondary.
But Purley Oaks has never had a great reputation - if there is a chance that you might end up there, I really would advise a visit.
St Peter's has a very good reputation - I think it has been expanded in the last couple of years to a 2 form entry, so you may have a slightly better chance of getting in. Ask what the greatest distance was last year when you visit.
Obviously Harris is fairly new so no experience of that one. Has Heathfield even opened yet - I know their new building in Aberdeen Road wasn't finished in time for this September.

ScienceRocks Wed 05-Oct-16 08:40:54

The distances should be in the primary school admissions handbook, which is available on the council website if you don't have a copy. Or the schools will be able to tell you if you phone them.

Purley oaks does have a bad reputation, so do go and have a look. It suffers from high pupil and staff turnover. Parental engagement isn't great, because it has a lot of esl families - no PTA, as far as I know.

Haling hasn't been open long. I'd go and have a look there too. I don't think it is oversubscribed.

St. Peter's is a lovely school but very popular. It recently went two form entry, which has helped a bit, but if Purley oaks is your nearest school, you probably are too far to get in, even on a waiting list.

Have you considered Christ church? That is now two form entry, and depending on where you live, you may be able to squeak in. If you go to church, you have a better chance! Have a look at the admissions criteria. Nice school, currently a building site though!

You may also be in with a chance at ridgeway - an outstanding three form entry school, according to ofsted, and very popular - and Regina coeli, which is Catholic but does take non-church goers. Regina recently had an ofsted that didn't go well, but there is a lot going on to make it better.

codandchipstwice Wed 05-Oct-16 10:51:30

MY DC are at St P, eldest left last year as last of the one form intake, we live very nearby but didn't get a place until the start of term - and in fact intially didn't get any places at all. At that time I really didn't want Purley Oaks but I'm hearing better things about it.

The fact that in it's first year the Harris primary went through two reception teachers and a head (and they only had 2 reception classes) tells you about the Harris - I think the school itself is OK but it's the Harris culture for staff that's the problem sad Howard very good but so hard to get into.

I am guessing you live very near me so would strongly recommend you consider Ridgeway, it's a fantastic school and as it's bigger the catchment is a decent size.

I have had mixed experiences with St P - younger DCs started with new Head a few years ago and having a much more positive exp than eldest did, it really is a good school now with lovely outdoor space too.

If you are C of E then ChristChurch and St Johns also worth looking at.

Heathfield I know little of other than recently thing in the Advertiser saying it's going to stay in it's temp home for now, that alone would put me off.

Finally, we eventually got a place at Ridgeway which we loved and then at the start of term a place at St P came up - whilst DS has had mixed experiences there it meant I could push the other two in the double buggy to school each day (as I don't drive) - and it meant all their friends really live nearby. I think there is definitely a bonus at going for a really near school, so please think sensibly when making your choices as getting no places at all is absolutely horrid.

Good luck

Leoandme Wed 05-Oct-16 21:27:20

Thank you so much for your comments. I saw both harris and st peters today, both seemed nice schools. I need to think about my other choices now so I can put down 6 schools, and do some visits at schools I haven't seen yet!

waddontoddle Sat 22-Oct-16 08:48:40

Did you visit Harris Primary Purley Way? I have just started a topic trying to get some reviews as it is a brand new school and has 90 Reception places for September 2017. It would be really handy for us but I don't really know anything about Harris schools. Would be great to get some feedback.

Leoandme Mon 24-Oct-16 17:24:54

Hi sorry for late reply, no I didn't visit that Harris. I visited the one in south Croydon. Although I only when to the open evening I didn't see it in action unfortunately. Di you have a link to the other thread please? I'd be interested to have a read

waddontoddle Tue 25-Oct-16 13:58:45

Hi I just named the other thread Harris Primary Purley Way. I haven't had any response yet unfortunately. I see Harris Purley Way have Open Evenings too so going to pop along. Although just checked their website again and it says they have open mornings every Wednesday at 10am so will be able to see their Reception class in action which will be informative. Like you said you can only get so much from an open evening. Website is

aimhighdance Sat 29-Oct-16 09:22:22

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lacebell10 Sat 31-Dec-16 06:09:10

Purley Oaks Reception: a friend is very happy with and thinks that KS1 teaching will be good. Has concerns about KS2 but is only in reception at present. Non church places at Christ Church initially went out to the Royal Oak roundabout. But lots of religious attendance including non Christian can be taken into account. BUT it is a strong practicing Christian ethos which runs throughout the curriculum. Good at teaching and being open about other religions but not an easy choice for an atheist or agnostic.

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