Secondary schools you're happy with in areas with houses for £400,000?(23 Posts)
Like everyone else in London with average paying jobs, we can't take the slog anymore and are planning a move to Bristol for the start of the 2018/19 academic year.
We have two boys and need both a primary and a secondary school.
Our budget for a house is about £400,000.
While I've had a number of recommendations for primary schools, is anyone happy with their child's state secondary school in Bristol? Surely they can't all be so awful as the internet seems to suggest, with the only option but to go private or give your child an hour long commute?
If anyone is happy with their child's secondary school in Bristol I'd love to hear which one it is! Thanks!
I hear very good things about Fairfield.
Hi op, Well you need to look at the results and read the ofsted reports, they're considered to be accurate for Bristol schools.
Schools that are considered good:
St mary redcliffe (c of e)
Lots in south Gloucestershire eg castle school
Lots in north somerset eg backwell, gordano, Clevedon, chew valley, Churchill
Can't remember the names of the Keynsham schools but there are good ones
The good schools aren't necessarily all in central Bristol and for the ones I mentioned in Bristol you need to be right in the catchment or fit the other criteria I. E religious.
Bristol schools used to be bad the education authority was 4th from bottom nationally fir secondary education, high levels of kids going to private schools. However it has changed and numerous. Numbers in private education have fallen as demonstrated by the fact the 2 private schools became non fee paying (cathedral and Colstons girls) and 2 girls fee paying schools have just merged.
Good luck with your move. I personally love Clevedon which is just outside Bristol. Sea views, sunsets, a Pier, community vibe with community run cinema and bookshop, lovely shops on hill road, cheaper house prices, good primary and state schools.
Btw - are you C of E? If so St Mary Redcliffe sounds lovely, gets good results, and 400k will get you Southville or thereabouts, which is a very nice place to live.
Here you are £360k in clevedon
£360k in southville
In southville houses sell quick. We sold a house there to first viewers. We bought one there before it was on the market.
It's worth watching the recent location, location, location in Bristol it's on catch up. They talk about some of the issues with the Bristol market and help a couple who'd 9ffered on 8 houses already!
£400k in Redland (it's a flat not a house)
The good news is £400k will get you a good house near a good school.
Redland Green haday the best results in GCSEs this summer just gone. It was built in the last decade and has good facilities. Redland itself is quite pricey, so your budget would probably get you a flat or a very run down property. More affordable would be the modern builds in Westbury Park or the southern end of Bishopston. Cotham School is a decent school and both feed into the same sixth form.
Thanks so much for the replies, they are all very appreciated!
2014newme - yes as you say, I have been slowly making my way through the Ofsted reports and good to know you think they are a true reflection, I take their comments on board but it's always nice to hear what parents/kids actually say /feel about the school.
And thanks for the property hunt! I hope I didn't sound snobby by claiming £400k was 'average' - we bought a while ago and our house has gone up in value to something we ironically wouldn't be able to afford if buying for first time now.
Unfortunately we're not CofE, so it sounds like St Mary Redcliffe is out.
Also we are hoping to stay in Bristol to avoid the commute rather than the surrounding area.
Does anyone have a child at Bristol Metropolitan or Bristol Brunel Academy? Would love to hear what you think of either of those. And thanks Pansies - will read up on Fairfield!
A PP couldn't remember the names of the schools in Keynsham.
Wellsway (secondary )
Broadlands Academy (secondary )
St John's (primary)
St Keyna (primary)
Castle (primary )
Chandag (separate infants and junior schools )
Lots of people send their children across counties to the secondary schools. Keynsham is in Bath and North East Somerset (BANES ) but I know people send them from North Somerset, South Gloucestershire, and City of Bristol.
You're not snobby, £400k won't buy you much in parts of Bristol! It would not be considered an outlandish budget by any means. I haven't heard of those schools but they aren't in the most sought after areas, perhaps having higher levels of deprivation than some other areas, so you may find your money goes further in those parts of town. Depends where you're commuting to though, it's actually easier to reach some parts of central Bristol from outside the city than crossing the city centre, particularly at moment, lots of building work going on. 😥
Another possible is living Bath side of Bristol (upper knowle, Bridlington or Keynsham) and sending to school in Bath. I know lots who do this. Haylesfield (girls) and Oldfield (mixed)
I know a child at Bristol met. Parents and child both happy with it. I'm a big fan of Fairfield - message me if you want!
Traffic in Bristol is terrible, really, really terrible. Not the best place to avoid a bad commute.
You need to read the admissions policy of Bristol schools really carefully. There are some excellent schools in Bristol and some of those randomly allocate their places. Also there are areas of priority at others. You may live very close to a school you like but If you live opposite to their area of priority you will be less likely to get a place than someone who lives further away.
I’m probably not explaining that well, but I’ve just submitted our secondary application and it’s been bloody stressful. Mainly because the area we live in most of the schools have odd admissions policies meaning we are not likely to get in.
I’m not sure what you’ve read on the internet but Bristol does have some excellent schools. You definitely need to visit them each to find the right fit though.
You don't have to be C of E for St Mary Redcliffe they accept pupils from any church background. You do have to be a regular church attender though. This is the criteria for Y7 entry - am not 100% sure how the waiting lists work.
There is also St Bedes if you are Catholic.
Thanks everyone for the advice, again its much appreciated!
Interesting to hear another vote for Fairfield and a happy family with Bristol Met - BishopstonFaffing I might take you up on your offer and message you in the next week once I've gotten round to the Ofsted report if you don't mind. I will of course visit all these schools but all this info helps to form the bigger picture.
Re: commute, we don't have jobs lined up as yet but will most likely be working in the centre. We really really don't want to drive. Ideally we would cycle in, (well, walk really, but am aware that might be a bit unrealistic), or then hopefully keep a commute on public transport to under half hour, max 45min. But I take your point jay55 about Bristol traffic.
Hungry Donkey thanks for your admissions warning - my experience in London is that its all distance, but someone else mentioned to me about certain schools having a different way of prioritising so thanks I will read up on it.
Thanks again everyone, please keep letting me know if you have any other votes or advice re schools in Bristol!
If you're interested in Fairfield, then St Werburghs may be worth looking at as it's definitely cyclable to town centre (20 min walk to Cabot), family friendly area, houses in your price range:
Though I would check about admissions areas as DS is primary so I basically assumed it was in area. You are within area for a bunch of decent primaries.
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