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 Post subject: Greenwich Free School
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:56 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:18 pm
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Does anyone have any insights/thoughts about this new school?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:24 am 
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Didn't want to leave you with no replies but it is impossible to comment on a particular free school without passing opinion on the whole concept of them. I checked out the website - there are certainly some highly qualified people involved, though most are interestingly not highly qualified in education: business, finance, that kind of thing. Entrepreneurs, I suppose, which as it is essentially a business is what you need most of. Though I see they do have a head and a deputy who look well qualified enough. Some teachers would add value, I guess.

Got to be honest, not keen on the idea of them - ill thought through, don't work in Sweden which is the model they are based on, and if Toby Young is the best ambassador for the cause they can come up with...


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:43 am 
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Taken a quick look at the website. Hard to tell really. Interesting experiment. As a prospective parent one of the things that you would not know is which subjects will be on offer at GCSE and A level. They are telling you what they offer in Year 7, but not higher. With only 100 children maximum in each year group you can't financially afford to offer a huge curriculum. Also if it's a fully comprehensive intake only a proportion of 100 would stay on each year to do academic A levels so the 6th form could end up very small unless they draw in pupils from other schools at that stage.

Free schools get the same amount per pupil as other schools I suppose? I think that 180 per year group is normally considered to be a good size for a secondary school to be able to offer a wide enough curriculum.

I know nothing about Greenwich. Are the secondaries there bad? What has been the driver behind this?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 12:46 pm 
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Yes, secondaries in Greenwich are not brilliant but have been improving although many parents try to send children to Kent/Bexley for grammars. Think it would be a huge leap of faith to send a child to a school which is still just a concept and not sure about the idea of not having older children in the school as it's a huge part of the secondary school experience


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:14 pm 
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Anything that reduces the demand on Bexley GS places must be a good thing. I wish Bexley would get one, if DD2 does not get in to local GS I may have to look in to Indies. We do not like any of the Bexley non selective schools in our area. Given the opportunity I would seriously consider a FS if there was one in Bexley.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:43 pm 
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Haven't you got a Harris Academy in Bexley? What's that like?


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:08 am 
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Yes, but Harris has a very restricted catchment area, especially depending on which banding you are in. Some children from our Primary had it as first choice last year but non got in.


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