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Moving to Chelmsford from Scotland

(11 Posts)
bubsmum10 Wed 06-Aug-14 10:56:46

Hi my husband recently got a job in London and we thought we would manage to do the weekly commute back home. Now decided that me and my 2 boys aged 2 and 4 should move down. We have been told that Chelmsford is a good starting point. Husband would be able to commute into Central London and we would have a good choice of schools/ homes to rent within budget.

We have not got a tenancy agreement yet and have been told by Essex council that until we do we can't make applications for school, plus the schools are closed for summer so not going to find out if there are places until first week in September.

Does anyone know the likelihood of us getting our son into a school with our initial application. first choice would be Catholic schools as I am a Catholic teacher myself and would be hoping to get work maybe in a couple of months down the line once things are settled and I've found a nursery or childminder for my 2 year old.

We are in unknown territory here, don't know the English School system at all and anyone we know who lives in London is in their twenties and single so can't relate.

All help Appreciated,



tricot39 Wed 06-Aug-14 20:03:40

If you need a reception place (for the year a child turns 5) you will have to take wherever is offered and go on the waiting list for a preferred school. Most.popular/desirable schools will have filled their places. Some areas clear their waiting lists at xmas and you have to re-apply so check that out. If you move you will be doing an in-year transfer. Normally this is managed by the local authority not the schools so they probably mean that they need to wait to see if everyone turns up as expected.before they can do much. Places are allocated to the waiting list based on the same criteria as offers are made. You will need to get the primary school applications guidebook from the website to check criteria. Religious schools have different levels of proof and additional forms to be submitted generally. Really it is not that different to scotland. There are lots of edinburgh s,hools.which have catchment kids.on waiting lists. I dont know about chelmsford but friends nearby didnt get their chosen catholic primary because they were too far in the end. Good luck

bubsmum10 Wed 06-Aug-14 21:27:46

Thanks for your help, trying to decide on how soon to join my husband and nervous about pulling my son out of pre-school up here with the possibility of nowhere to go. Don't really like the idea of putting him in a school to then move him a couple of months later. So much to think about!

LocalEditorChelmsford Thu 07-Aug-14 11:33:02

Hi - I'm the editor of Mumsnet Chelmsford and know Chelmsford pretty well!

Have you got any idea of whereabouts in Chelmsford you are moving too. I might be able to give you some idea of schools in the those areas so it would at least narrow down the schools you need to research.

bubsmum10 Fri 15-Aug-14 22:08:23

Hi, Sorry not been on in a week, been busy clearing and decorating Glasgow house to put up for rental and hand notice into employer meanwhile my husband has been doing property search. We have managed to secure a let in the Old Moulsham area and are both very excited although now very scared that my son is not going to get in anywhere!

I've got a list of schools that seem to be near however not had a chance to check ofsted reports etc yet. Our Lady Immaculate, Oaklands Infant, Moulsham Infant, Trinity Road. Any local knowledge would be much appreciated.

Iam joining my husband on the 6th of September with our two boys and will probably be doing a lot of research on stuff to do, clubs for boys to keep us busy before thinking about finding childcare and getting back to work myself!


hiccupgirl Sat 16-Aug-14 15:33:23

Am pretty local with a DS starting school this year.

From friends I have heard that Our Lady is full with a waiting list. There is another catholic primary on the north side of Chelmsford - St Pious I think, which may have space. I would expect all the schools close to Old Moulsham are full as there is a high demand for spaces locally. Of the ones you mentioned Trinty Road has the worst reputation but tbh none of the schools in Chelmsford are awful. There is also The Catherdral School on the north side of the town centre which is very good.

Sorry for the ramblings there!

bubsmum10 Thu 21-Aug-14 23:24:34

Thanks for that, I won't be getting my hopes up for Our Lady! Is it normal for kids to go to school out with their catchment? In Glasgow you go to the non denom or catholic school in the area unless you are in a bad area and want your kid to be in a better one.

My priority initially is to get my son in somewhere but I would like him to have friends that live near us - does this happen?

mollyb101 Fri 22-Aug-14 10:09:17

Hey there, first post but as I have only recently moved out of Chelmsford i thought I would just say none of the schools in Chelmsford are terrible although some are in "less affluent areas" than others. From Moulsham you are close to Great Baddow/Galleywood area which I believe has a number of good primary schools as well as preschools should you wish to move sooner rather than later.

I dont have much experience of the Catholic schools in the area but it might be worth having a chat with the city council who maybe able to offer some advice.

I hope you enjoy the move to Chelmsford as its going though quite a bit of development now its a city so should be a good time to be living there.

hiccupgirl Fri 22-Aug-14 21:53:41

The catchment areas in England are called 'priority admission areas' and it just means you get priority in a place over people outside of that area but it doesn't guarantee a place to children in that area.

Chelmsford like lots of the SE has a lot of children starting school this year so the popular schools are full by now leaving whatever spaces there are over for people coming later. But it's not that big a town (sorry very small city!) so it's not hard to meet up with friends even if you don't live really close.

I know through friends that some of the Reception classes in the outlying villages like Danbury weren't completely full so you might get offered spaces with a short drive. Like molly says none of the schools in Chelmsford are really poor or inadequate, just some have better reputations than others. Hopefully now you have an address, the council will find places for you to go and look at as soon as the schools go back on 3rd Sept.

bubsmum10 Sun 24-Aug-14 20:10:01

Thanks for the help ladies. My husband moves in on the 30th and then we are coming on the 6th. Hoping that all goes well and my son will maybe start somewhere on the Monday - so as well as packing and moving we will be going shopping for a uniform! Will look into the outlying areas mentioned and hopefully once the schools open I can have a chat to some of the schools we are looking at.

hiccupgirl Mon 25-Aug-14 08:32:13

Just so you know most of the local schools are not starting the Reception children until the week of 8th Sept and some are later than that so your DS shouldn't miss out on a lot.

Hope you find a school you like. As I said Chelmsford isn't a huge place despite technically being a city and lots of children go to different schools to their neighbours.

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