Wollaton Catchment review consultation

Catchment review consultation

The Council is consulting on two proposals to realign the catchment areas of Middleton and Fernwood Primary Schools in Wollaton. The consultation begins on Monday 1 July 2019 and runs until Sunday 28 July 2019.

What is the rationale for review and consultation?

A review of the school catchment areas was last undertaken in the Wollaton school place planning area from 2011 to 2012. Since then, both Fernwood and Middleton primary schools have been expanded to increase their capacity by an extra 210 places at each school (Middleton expansion to be completed by September 2019). 

Due to demographic changes, housing developments and increased inward migration, the Council has invested in more school places to ensure capacity in the area and for the communities the schools serve.

The next phase and proposals aim to re-balance the size of the catchment areas with their new school sizes. To provide rational distribution of places and to maximise the number of pupils accessing a place at their catchment school, ideally close to their home and community.

The rationale for Proposal 1 (below) is to ensure provisions for future pupils residing in the proposed new 110 dwelling development on Woodyard Lane and to increase the likelihood of pupils securing a place at their catchment school.

Each school has its own existing designated catchment area, which is shown on:

We would like your views on two proposals to make minor adjustments to the existing catchments, to be implemented for 2021 to 2022 academic year:

Proposal 1

Extend the catchment area of Middleton Primary, to include the proposed new housing development expected to be built on Woodyard Lane (approx. 110 dwellings).  This area is currently located in the catchment of Fernwood Primary.  The proposal relocates it to the adjacent Middleton catchment. As this is a site currently planned for development, there are no existing residents affected by the change.

This proposal is shown on Map 2: Woodyard Lane to Middleton.

Proposal 2

Alter the catchment areas slightly, to transfer the area of Tom Blower Close from the Fernwood catchment to the adjacent Middleton catchment.  Tom Blower Close was originally moved into Fernwood’s catchment back in 2012, as some pupils living here were not securing a place at their catchment school, as there was insufficient capacity at Middleton Primary at that time.  This realignment was always subject to review depending on demographic changes and future school expansion plans in Wollaton.

This proposal is shown on Map 3: Woodyard Lane and Tom Blower Close to Middleton.

Map 4 shows the new catchment boundaries if both Proposals 1 and 2 were implemented.

 

Your Questions

Why do we have school catchment areas?

The catchment area of a school is significant for the following reasons:

  • School catchment areas are in place to support the assessment and determination when allocating school places. Children who reside within the catchment area of a designated school currently receive priority for school places if their preferred school is oversubscribed
  • Catchment areas play a key part in ensuring provisions of school places within a designated area
  • While parents are not obliged to apply for their children to attend their designated catchment school, having catchment areas is useful as a guide for parents to understand which school generally serves their community

 

Does Middleton Primary School have sufficient capacity to accommodate an increase in their catchment area?

  • Analysis of admissions data, births data, catchment loyalty, migration since births and pupil yield from new housing developments provide evidence that there is sufficient capacity to accommodate a larger Middleton catchment area, without displacing pupils already in the catchment. Middleton’s newly expanded capacity for 630 pupils, has projected capacity to accommodate both proposals

 

What is the reason to move Tom Blower Close back into the Middleton Primary catchment?

 

  • Tom Blower Close was originally moved into the Fernwood Primary catchment back in 2012 as some pupils living here were not securing a place at their catchment school, which was then Middleton, as there was insufficient capacity at that time.  This was always subject to review depending on demographic changes and future school expansion plans in Wollaton. Now the context has changed and Middleton has increased capacity by 50%, therefore catchment areas need reviewing to match their new school sizes
  • Proportionally and for the size of the catchment population, there is greater capacity at the newly expanded Middleton Primary to accommodate growth in numbers.  Therefore, realigning the catchments to relocate Tom Blower Close to the Middleton Primary catchment, will provide a more rational distribution of places to meet the need
  • This move would provide a more logical catchment boundary, particularly if the new Woodyard Lane development is moving into Middleton’s catchment (see map 3).  Woodyard Lane residents will need to travel past Tom Blower Close to travel to Middleton Primary
  • Tom Blower Close is significantly closer in walking distance to Middleton Primary

 

If my child’s school catchment area is changing (as would be the case for residents of Tom Blower Close only), will younger brothers and sisters be refused a place?

  • School places are allocated according to strict criteria which place a high criterion on pupils living in the catchment area with a sibling already attending the school

  • If, following consultation, a decision is made to implement Proposal 2 to change the catchment area of Tom Blower Close, any younger siblings of Fernwood Primary pupils, who are on roll at July 2021 (in Years Reception up to Year 5), who will still be on roll in the academic year that the sibling is applying for, will have priority over ‘non-catchment siblings and will effectively be considered as ‘catchment siblings’ for the purpose of first admission

  • This protected priority would not apply for subsequent siblings.  Therefore, it would apply for up to a maximum of 6 years up to 2026 and 2027 academic years of admission

 

What will the impact be on Fernwood Primary’s intake?

  • Some further growth is already expected in Fernwood Primary’s catchment population, as the new ‘Martin’s Reach’ housing development will remain located in Fernwood’s catchment. This development, which is currently being built, will be approximately 100 new family-sized houses and is similar in size to the second large 110 housing development proposed at Woodyard Lane
  • Realigning the catchments to relocate the Woodyard Lane development to the Middleton Primary catchment, will provide a more rational distribution of capacity

 

Are there any plans to change the catchment of Fernwood Academy Secondary School?

  • There are no plans for The Fernwood Academy to change its catchment area.  They also continue to operate a designated feeder school admissions criteria for Fernwood, Middleton and Southwold Primary Schools
  • The Fernwood Academy is currently being expanded and is due to increase their pupil capacity from September 2020 admissions

Your Views Matter

Please take this opportunity to have your say and respond to the consultation questionnaire, which is available on our website at the following link:

 Consultation Questionnaire 

The consultation is running from Monday 1 July to Sunday 28 July 2019.

All responses need to be received by midnight on 28 July 2019.

Your response to this consultation will be considered carefully when the Council considers whether the proposals should be taken forward to implementation.

How else can I tell you what I think?

  • Talking to a Council representative at one of the meetings detailed below
  • Email the Council’s School Organisation Project Manager at lucy.juby@nottinghamcity.gov.uk if you have any questions on the options for consultation

Find Out More

There are two opportunities to attend a drop-in information session, if you would like to ask questions, make comments and share your views on the options put forward.

Date

Who can attend

Time

Where

Monday 8th July

Parents, carers and staff

Governors and others

 

10 to 11.30a.m

 

Kingswood Methodist Church and Community Centre,
Lambourne Drive,
NG8 1GR

Monday 15th July

Parents, carers and staff

Governors and others

 

6 to 7.30p.m

Kingswood Methodist Church and Community Centre,
Lambourne Drive,
NG8 1GR

Additional Statutory Consultation Requirements

The School Admissions Code requires Local Authorities to consult on the admissions arrangements for those schools for which it is the admissions authority.  Where changes to existing arrangements are proposed, including school catchments areas, consultation must be undertaken with those likely to be affected by the proposals.

Therefore, any proposed catchment changes will also form part of a consultation on the Nottingham City School Admission Arrangements that are proposed to be implemented for 2021 to 2022 academic year. This will take place for 6 weeks between October and December 2019. The final determination of Admission Arrangements will then be approved by the Council’s Executive Board by 28th February 2020.

Additional requirements

Please let us know as soon as possible if you have any special requirements, either for a meeting or for this document, e.g. translation, signing, large print, audiotape, Braille, or disable access to a meeting.