Hi We are probably going to move to Bishops Stortford by next summer. We have three children -ages 8, 5 and 2 . Where would you recommend living and which schools (state primary and secondary)are good. We are R.C but understand that we may not be able to get the children into a catholic school.
Secondly, are there lots of activities do do after school - dancing/ drama/ karate football e.t.c ?
I am from Stortford. You may struggle to get them into St Joseph's, but to be honest all the primary schools in the area are good, with perhaps the exception being Windhill, but that is having loads of money being thrown at it by the LEA so in a few years I think it will be much better, so you can pick a house you like rather than pick one around a school. have you read things like Ofsted reports yet?
Secondary schools, well there are 5. One is RC (St Mary's), a boys, a girls and 2 mixed. One of which being Hockrill Anglo European which is a fantastic school. You need to be on the west side of town for that one.
St Josephs does have some spaces in various years so I would certainly try there first. As an alternative there is a small catholic primary in Puckeridge (St Thomas of Canterbury) which is about 8 miles away that some people in Bishop Stortford send their children to. There was free transport but I don't know whether there still is.
If you are a practising catholic and live in Bishop's Stortford you should be able to get your child into St Mary's without any problem.
I agree with Hersetta though you can choose where you want to live rather being tied to a particular school. Although I would just say that the secondaries other than St Mary's allocate places by distance within a group of close together primary schools. So if you send your DCs to a school on the opposite side of town from where you live then you can lose out when applying to a secondary school.
Birchwood, Hockerill and Herts & Essex go by distance from the school if any of the categories are over subscribed. Boys' High is slightly different. If you prefer these to St Mary's then your best bet is to aim for the west side of town where the other secondaries are.
Don't know about karate but all the other activities you mentioned are well catered for.