The West Dulwich Forum
Share your thoughts about Dulwich and West Dulwich, SE21

Goto Page: 12Next
Current Page: 1 of 2
Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Helerivera 21 April, 2012 23:21

Hi
I live in WD, 415 m away from elmwood. I put down the five closest schools on my Admissions form and have been allocated a school near loughborough junction called Jessops.

is anyone in a similiar situation?

does anyone know anything about Jessops?

does anyone know what the waiting list in Elmwood is?

thanks. this is so nerve- wrecking.

a mother

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 22 April, 2012 06:06

Hi,
I know what your going through I live 6 min walk from Rosendale and my son didn't get in not even any 6 on our list
We got Fenstanton- not on our list, I called Lambeth council they said call day after 2 may when they have all the slips
In for people accepting places then they would tell me where he is on the list.
It's a very stressful time.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Helerivera 22 April, 2012 08:38

Hi-
That is terrible. How far away are you from Fenstanton? The place we were offered is 2 miles away which means a 40 minute walk to school (or 2 buses). I can't see how that can be good for any child. And if your child isn't anywhere near their home, they won't have any local school-friends in their neighbourhood.

If it helps, I heard from Lambeth that Rosendale's furthest distance for admission was 348m.

Best

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 22 April, 2012 08:55

Hi,
We live in the town houses on Rosendale Road, takes about 20 mins walk to fenstanton I also have to take my older child to another school and have a baby I will have to drive if I walk he will be late everyday, it's a joke we should be able to go to our local school, will you appeal I'm going to, will you send your child to Jessops.
Was that on your list we put down 6 schools and didn't get any you wonder if the system even works.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: minder 22 April, 2012 22:40

Helerivera - I used to go to the Jessops Children's Centre as a childminder (this was a year and a half a ago) and it had excellent facilities and staff.

I have no experience of the actual school other than seeing the children playing in the playground. The children seemed to be having a good time, playing football and being watched by the teachers.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Jonathan 23 April, 2012 11:31

We went through this last year, so you have our sympathy. We live on Walkerscroft Mead which was too far away and got allocated Fenstanton (which wasn't one of our five preferred schools which were the nearest to us in order of distance), a troubled school to say the least: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012/03/14/head-quits-mother-stabbed-classroom_n_1344259.html

The last entrant on the distance criteria for entry in September 2011 was at 566 metres. For 2010 it was over 1000 metres. The sibling priority rule which is used discriminates against children without siblings. You've also got to contend with parents who "bend the rules" to get into Rosendale, eg renting very closeby for six months or so, then moving futher out.

We went through the appeal process and my advice would be not to bother appealing unless you're sure Lambeth Shcool Admissions have made an error. We ended having to use Oakfield Prep; fortunately we got a place at Rosendale first day of spring term after a family emigrated as we were at/near the top of the waiting list.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 23 April, 2012 13:45

Hi,
Have been doing research and speaking to parents at Fenstanton, it's not all bad, a new head has gone in and turning it around, so sounds more positive than before, they are building a new school and that story of the mother stabbing is terrible but sounds worse than it is, we are accepting the place for our son, as the saying goes never judge a book by its cover- wish us luck :))))

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Jonathan 23 April, 2012 13:58

Kat3 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hi,
> Have been doing research and speaking to parents
> at Fenstanton, it's not all bad, a new head has
> gone in and turning it around, so sounds more
> positive than before, they are building a new
> school and that story of the mother stabbing is
> terrible but sounds worse than it is, we are
> accepting the place for our son, as the saying
> goes never judge a book by its cover- wish us luck
> :))))

Good luck! Fenstanton *will* turn around with a decent head and more importantly, willing parents willing to get involved with the decision making process there.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 23 April, 2012 14:23

Yes it's still a gamble but it's the same guy that turned elm wood around so I feel alot better about it :)

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: B. 23 April, 2012 21:46

first post, just registered to find some school info and saw this...

We didn't get any of the schools we applied for and have been allocated Langbourne? Does any one know anything about it? To be honest, it's the closest school to us as we live just off college road next to DC, so at least we don't have the commute to contend with, but we went to look at the school yesterday eve and it looks a bit like something from the bronx circa 1979.

I can't find anything on the forums from parent's who's kids go there and though it's improving according to ofstead (for what that's worth) it's still not exactly encouraging. We've now got the whole waiting list thing to try and ride out. It's great where we are for kids but there's no schools...

The whole school thing is a bit of a joke, we did laugh at the council leaflets encouraging you to pick a school that suits your child. Does anyone actually get any choice? seems like it's just allocated on distance so why the veneer of choice?

Anyway, does anyone have a kid at langbourne?

B.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Helerivera 24 April, 2012 10:50

Minder- thanks. I agree, I use the children's centre too a few times and it is a great place. The distance of the school is the main setback, because like fenstanton it seems to be improving.

Kat3- Good luck! I might look at fenstanton myself....

Does anyone have information from Lambeth regarding waiting lists from Rosendale or Elmwood or Kingswood?

Southwark council has been so forthcoming about getting information out, but as always Lambeth is difficult to pin down.

Thanks

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: happymum 04 May, 2012 22:48

Hi

We are also in the same situation and my DD got allocated place in Jessop as well.
Our preferences were Elm wood, Kingswood, Resendale.But we were told that DD is on waiitng list but don't know on what number?
It's very confusing although accepted allocated place.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: happymum 21 May, 2012 22:05

hi, Jessop school has published "outstanding" ofsted report done on 1-2 May 2012.
It seems more promising.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Apple314 26 May, 2012 16:09

We didn't get any school on our list. I told the council where they can stick Fenstanton. Do you really think Tessa Jowell would send her child to a school where standards in reading and maths are 'exceptionally low'? And I fail to see how the recent stabbing can 'sound worse than it is'! So we are without a school place but frankly I would rather that than send her to this godawful excuse for a school. Good luck to those of you taking the risk but it's not for us!

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 27 May, 2012 18:18

What school did you put as your first choice, I thought that at first but it will get better with the new head, Elm Wood a few years ago was terrible and now look at it.
I appealed so see where that takes us.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Apple314 28 May, 2012 11:31

I appealed too. A new headmaster won't be able to turn this school around in my opinion because the problem is not the teachers but the parents, who place a low priority on attendance and punctuality (according to Ofsted). Look at the housing stock around Elm Wood and look at it around Fenstanton. I don't think the two are comparable. I am saying this beacuse I think parents should be up in arms over this situation instead of accepting whatever rubbish the council throws at us.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: moonagedaydream 28 May, 2012 16:33

Apple314 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I appealed too. A new headmaster won't be able to
> turn this school around in my opinion because the
> problem is not the teachers but the parents, who
> place a low priority on attendance and punctuality
> (according to Ofsted). Look at the housing stock
> around Elm Wood and look at it around Fenstanton.
> I don't think the two are comparable. I am saying
> this beacuse I think parents should be up in arms
> over this situation instead of accepting whatever
> rubbish the council throws at us.

I have had absolutely no desire to become a member of this site, but after having read your post I felt the need to respond.
Whilst I agree with your statement regarding attendance and punctuality if you read the Elm Wood and Kingswood Ofsted you will find that these are the only areas in which they did not receive an outstanding grading.

Regarding the 'housing stock', have you actually considered that the 'proles' whose children attended Elm Wood when it was put in special measures were the same parents who helped them to achieve an outstanding grade within less than two years?

I sincerely hope that your child attends one of the Gipsy Hill Federation schools, not for your benefit, but so that they can one day give YOU an education regarding tolerance and the celebration of social difference.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 28/05/2012 17:00 by moonagedaydream.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Apple314 29 May, 2012 11:40

I seem to have a hit a nerve. As a former member of the proletariat, I take exception to the term 'proles'. In any event, Ofsted rates Fenstanton a "good" school even though standards are "below average" and in reading and maths are "exceptionally low". Furthermore, a "significant number of pupils arrive at different times with low skills and speaking very little English" and "a significant minority of pupils misbehave". Hands up if this school sounds "good" to you?

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Kat3 29 May, 2012 11:48

What school did you want, did you get an appeal date, what will you do if you don't have a school for September.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: moonagedaydream 29 May, 2012 16:02

Apple314 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I seem to have a hit a nerve. As a former member
> of the proletariat, I take exception to the term
> 'proles'. In any event, Ofsted rates Fenstanton a
> "good" school even though standards are "below
> average" and in reading and maths are
> "exceptionally low". Furthermore, a "significant
> number of pupils arrive at different times with
> low skills and speaking very little English" and

> "a significant minority of pupils misbehave".

My use of the term 'proles' was in keeping with my perceivable attitude of you, I myself am a 'prole'.
I took issue with your insinuation that Fenstanton are incable of becoming a better school due to the state of their local housing and the attitude of parents. I am not blind to the facts regarding the current situation at Fenstanton but I have no doubt that they are inherited with the capacity to ensure sustained improvement. All you've done is thrown ofsted quotes at me, have you actually visited the school since the GHF have been in charge?

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Apple314 30 May, 2012 11:32

Funny you should ask me that. I received a phone call from Fenstanton yesterday. The new headmaster wants to meet parents at Kingswood! Apparently, it is so bad at Fenstanton, they don't want you to visit it for fear of scaring you away!

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: moonagedaydream 30 May, 2012 18:22

Apple314 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Funny you should ask me that. I received a phone
> call from Fenstanton yesterday. The new headmaster
> wants to meet parents at Kingswood! Apparently, it
> is so bad at Fenstanton, they don't want you to
> visit it for fear of scaring you away!

You do realise that induction meetings are at kingswood because of the state of the building and not the teaching? If the state of the school put you off initially I would agree with you completely: it's not pretty. But the GHF will ensure that the state of the building does not reflect the quality of learning. Please attend the meeting with an open mind, you might be surprised!

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: raqwat 09 July, 2012 09:38

moonagedaydream Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Apple314 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Funny you should ask me that. I received a
> phone
> > call from Fenstanton yesterday. The new
> headmaster
> > wants to meet parents at Kingswood! Apparently,
> it
> > is so bad at Fenstanton, they don't want you to
> > visit it for fear of scaring you away!
>
> You do realise that induction meetings are at
> kingswood because of the state of the building and
> not the teaching? If the state of the school put
> you off initially I would agree with you
> completely: it's not pretty. But the GHF will
> ensure that the state of the building does not
> reflect the quality of learning. Please attend the
> meeting with an open mind, you might be surprised!


I had to register on this forum after reading the above as I can relate to both opinions. I have accepted a place at Fenstanton for my daughter to start in September after the initial panic attack,(I didnt get any of my 6 choices, Elmwood being my first) as this was the school that I absolutely didnt want to send her to.

After hearing it had been taken over by the GHF I visited with an open mind and listened to what Craig Tunstall (Executive Head of GHF) had to say. I have no doubt in my mind that the school will be a success, Mr Tunstall has staked his career on it. They are rebuilding the school in much the same style as Kingswood Lower, which is lovely, and is due to be ready in May 2013. They have got rid of poor performing staff and certain troublesome pupils. The GHF are strict on attendance and will not stand for any parents who keep their children out of school. They have provided the new uniform to all pupils and when I went to register my daughter all the reception children were walking in line in silence to assembly. There is a great atmosphere at the school and in each classroom that we were shown around pupils were engaged and attentive.

I know its difficult to get your head around things Apple314 but please do visit the school, they have show arounds every Tuesday morning. The classrooms, at the moment, are mainly portacabins which they have refurbished with new flooring, furniture and colourful displays. You never know you may surprise yourself.

Its a difficult time as we are entrusting our children that we have nurtured for nearly 5 years to complete strangers in a strange environment and we need confidence that we are doing the right thing, we all want the best for our children.

Whatever you decide - Good Luck :)

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: jmc 30 July, 2012 23:15

We live in West Dulwich between Rosendale School and Elmwood. Basically we are in a black hole where we are outside the catchment area of any school, which was not the case when we moved here 2 1/2 years ago. Anticipating that we would struggle to get a place in a good state school, I wrote to Tessa Jowell and have to say I was very disappointed with her response which was just to forward my email to the head of Lambeth Educational services who then sent me a patronising email telling that there was no such thing as a "catchment area" (I understand the rules) and that there was nothing to worry about.

My son was offered a place at Fenstanton which we declined. Although I believe the new headmaster will turn it around, it will take a few years and I am not prepared to wait as my sons' primary education will be practically over by the time they do it. Reluctantly therefore we have decided to send him to one of the private schools in Dulwich. Both my wife and I were educated in the state system, we both went to university and neither of us feels particularly inclined to pay another 10-15k a year to educate our son when we already pay a substantial amount in tax.

Primary education in London is in crisis, yet nothing seems to be done about it. It is very worrying and disappointing especially for those less fortunate than we are who cannot afford the private sector.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: vivavialli 31 July, 2012 13:04

jmc - sorry to read about your predicament. It has been widely reported that there will shortly be a shortage of about 450,000 primary school places nationally, with London being particularly under pressure.. See the BBC on this:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-18996216

The consensus thinking seems to be that the huge additional pressure being brought to bear on education, health and social service provision is the result of the previous government throwing the door open to mass immigration a decade ago. The UK population has risen by the equivalent of 8 x the population of Manchester in the last decade.

The private sector may be your solution but it is under similar pressures to the state sector and the Dulwich schools are increasingly over subscribed from central London overspill, and Alleyns and DC seem very willing to take them in to the detriment of local children who lose out on places. Just because you are willing to pay for the service does not mean that it will be there when you turn to it as a last resport.

Good luck.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: jmc 03 August, 2012 10:11

vivaviall, my son has a place at Dulwich Prep London (formerly DCPS) and starts in September

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: ACM100 03 October, 2013 10:28

Ah, looks like we may be in a primary school blackhole. We're in the Levangro, Tulsemere and Dalmore area in West Dulwich. 0.5km to Rosendale and Elm Wood. Still 2 years away from applying for our son but we all know about the growing crisis in available primary school places. My question is, does anyone anecdotally now of the new Elm Wood catchment area since it has gone to 2 classes? In 2012 it was only 350m (see page 35 http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/B3382BA5-63AF-45DF-963A-ED3555B26E90/0/StartingPrimarySchoolAdmissions20132014.pdf). Any comments would be appreciated.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Cuckoo 04 September, 2014 20:50

Trying to revive this thread. Just started at Fenstanton today. We actually live a long way away but unlucky. Wondering who actually went, how happy you are etc.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/09/2014 19:18 by Cuckoo.

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Simona da silva 03 February, 2017 20:04

Hi does anyone have any more feedback about Fenstenton? 5 yrs on how is it , had it changed ? I visited the school and not impressed. I am actually petrified to send my son to this school . After 8 months battble with coincis now they are for ung Me And threatened to send to to court if my son not attending this school . Is anyone still able to help ?

Re: Help! any west dulwich parents who didn't get a place in a school?
Posted by: Simona da silva 03 February, 2017 20:07

Hi Kat 3 .any feedback about Fenstenton? What happened eventually? I have my son forced to start there and not impressed by the school . Any chance you could help ?

Goto Page: 12Next
Current Page: 1 of 2


Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
                                Terms of use               RSS rss feed                Help & FAQs               Website Design