Boroughmuir high school moving- where will my kids go?

(10 Posts)
RWRS Sun 20-Dec-15 16:13:24


We are moving to Edinburgh in the new year.
Our new house is in fairmilehead with a primary school catchment of Buckstone primary school.
According to Edinburgh council website we will be in the secondary catchment for Boroughmuir but I've heard that the school is due to be moving to a different site (fountain bridge /fountain park area I think).

Does anyone know much about this? Eh when it is due to happen or
Where the children of boroughmuirs current catchment area will go?
My children are primary school age at present but would be nice to know which secondary school our area will feed after Boroughmuir moves.


Datec Sun 20-Dec-15 19:48:43

Hello, as far as I know they would still currently go to bouroughmuir but there are rumors of the catchment being reevaluated and possibly buckstone kids moving to firrhill. All a runour at this stage and I inagine there will be Fearce opposition to this as a lot of parents move to buckstone for the catchment and the slightly more affordable housing. Logistically the new school is minutes away from the old one but practically firrhill is closer.. I would give the council a ring and ask about catchment redefining and what their plans are.. Sad fact is at some stage over next few years something will need to be done across the city as rolls are rising and capacity has its limits. The less popular schools are less in demand and need filling and will only improve with a wider spread of pupils and out of catchment requests I have been told will be phased out as soon just won't be possible. Just a rumour again though.. Nothing clear from the council which .. Frankly is to be expected! Personally I am all for that as I think people should support their local schools and hope it might help regulate house prices maybe.. Hopefully!? Wishful thinking I suppose.. Sorry don't know that that really helps but just wanted to share what I know.. X

As Datec says there's nothing been announced yet re changes and the new Boroughmuir is literally down the street from the old one. However, I wouldn't be surprised to see a rejig for the simple reason that, as well as Buckstone being closer to Firrhill, the new Boroughmuir building is no longer even in its own catchment area - it's in the catchment for Dalry/Tynecastle. That's fairly unusual.

That said, Firrhill doesn't have the capacity to absorb Buckstone at present - and neither does Gracemount (which personally would be more concerning as a catchment change.) They're both virtually full. So any change to try and sort Boroughmuir would be a very big job. I think to achieve it they'd have to do some shuffling - something like taking Longstone out of Firrhill and moving it to Tynecastle, to then create space to move Buckstone in to Firrhill. That would be doable (as Tynecastle is apparently running at about 60% capacity) but unpopular. And still leaves Boroughmuir not in its own catchment.

I know they were looking at building another primary school in South Edinburgh to try and relieve the pressure on South Morningside, Bruntsfield and James Gillespies. If it goes ahead, it will probably be that which forces the rejig of high school catchments as Boroughmuir is full to bursting to couldn't absorb even a small increase (if some of the new school's catchment would previously have gone to Gillespies.)

badguider Tue 29-Dec-15 19:54:52

We chose not to move to Buckstone due to the uncertainty. Our ds is 2. We moved to the pentland primary / Firrhill catchment instead.
However I think if your children are at least 8 or 9 they'll probably still go to the new boroughmuir. It's a bit of a trek though.

ILoveKnitting123 Sat 11-Jun-16 10:54:35

Hi there, I was wondering if anyone had any update on the above discussion?

It does seem from the council website that a new primary school has been approved to be built in Morningside, where some of the catchment for the new school would previously have gone to Gillespie's (as far as I can make out from the maps), as StatisticallyChallenged mentions above. I also found discussion on google saying the new Boroughmuir HS site and roll is not big enough.

So do people think this will prompt the council to try to reduce the Boroughuir roll by redrawing the catchment area?

Bellebelle Sun 12-Jun-16 14:28:15

There's a significant problem with capacity at both James Gillespies and Boroughmuir, both high schools are currently being rebuilt but with slightly less capacity than the old buildings had(!)

At Gillespies there was a challenge this year around the Gaelic unit and that children educated at the Gaelic school (old Bonnington Primary school) wouldn't automatically be granted a place at Gillespies High School, however this will continue for now as the headmaster has agreed to increase the annual intake from 200 per year in S1 to 220, this allows all catchment children and Gaelic educated children to get a place for now but obviously they'll be stretching resources and space further than intended to accommodate this so its not ideal. There are discussions about making the Darroch Site into an overflow for both Gillespies and Boroughmuir, possibly turning it into a kind of Sixth year college which isn't a terrible idea. However it will need upgrading and its questionable whether there will be funds available after so much investment has been made in rebuilding the high schools already and they're proposing to build a new primary school as well (I remain cynical about when/if that will actually happen.)

It does make sense to redraw catchments I think and also look at where the Gaelic unit goes, as mentioned above Tynecastle is undercapacity so could either take in more children from an expanded catchment or take on the Gaelic unit freeing up more space at Gillespies. However redrawing catchments is highly unpopular and it will take a very brave council to make the change. You only need to look at how property prices differ one street apart on the edge of the Boroughmuir and Gillespies catchment areas to get an idea of the impact the reputation of these supposedly 'good' and 'bad' schools have in Edinburgh.

My personal opinion is that they should look at the Gaelic education piece first, I've been close enough to it for long enough that I know that there are a significant number of families who chose to send their children into Gaelic education to be guaranteed a place at Gillespies without having to move into catchment. I'm entirely supportive of anyone who wants to educate their child to support the continuance of the Gaelic language but so long as the correct resources are in place it can be located anywhere in Edinburgh given that all pupils receive free transport.

sarelugs Sun 12-Jun-16 15:24:58

They might move Longstone to Tynecastleshock WH would be better and easier to get to.

GrooveeCar Sun 12-Jun-16 16:22:30

The new Boroughmuir site is literally 2-3 minutes down the road. I used to walk up Viewforth. The only problem is the new school falls into the Tunecastle catchment! Only Edinburgh council could do this!

I went to Tynecastle and a lot of Longstone pupils came to us! Was saddened to hear the roll is less than 500 now as it was always 900+.

sarelugs Sun 12-Jun-16 21:01:26

I will be really PO if Longstone gets moved to Tynecastle to make room for Buckstone. (Sorry PP). Longstone do split between Firrhill and Currie but I was not aware of some going to Tynecastle but it really isn't that convenient from longstone - not a pleasant stroll, no buses unless they cross the Calder Rdshock But then the only school that is really close to Longstone is WH. 2 miles to Firrhill and the same to Currie.

I wasn't saying moving Longstone was a good idea or even especially likely, sorry if it came across that way and I can well imagine there would be some very pissed people if it moved to Tynecastle (though not as many as if it moved to WHEC!) - it was just an indication of how far out they'd potentially have to go to try and create space (if needed) at Boroughmuir simply because the surrounding schools are so full already.

They should never have decided to build Boroughmuir on such a tight site when it was already struggling for capacity.

The council have actually approved a change to the catchment for both Brunstfield and Boroughmuir (linky to reflect the fact that they are building the new Boroughmuir inside Tynecastle's boundaries! They've moved Murdoch Terrace and Gibson Terrace in to the Boroughmuir catchment - plus the potential expansion if they build the new primary school.

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