The anti-grammar school campaign, Comprehensive Future has made clear today it is abandoning its attempt to launch a High Court Injunction to halt the proposed Sevenoaks Annex to Weald of Kent Grammar School, so building can now commence.
Cranbrook School, Kent’s only remaining 13-18 grammar school has been trying to come up with a proposal to change to 11-18 for at least three years, against fierce opposition from many parents of children attending local private schools, but has now put forward a compromise that will take seven further years to implement fully.
Highsted Grammar School has put forward a proposal for consultation to set an additional alternative Test for admission for girls, in line with grammar schools in Dover, Gravesham (girls) and Shepway.
Kent County Council has set up a Select Committee of Councillors to explore opportunities for wider access to grammar schools for disadvantaged pupils.
Barton Court Grammar School, having failed in its attempt to expand and move to Herne Bay, has now seen planning permission approved for a major expansion on its current site, which will allow an increased intake.
I also look at staying on rates for grammar school Sixth Forms which reveal a remarkable range of results, ranging from Dartford Grammar that has 73% more students in Year 12 than Year 11, to Folkestone School for Girls with 35% fewer.
Governors of Barton Court Grammar School in Canterbury, have decided the school should remain in the city, rather than pursue the proposed move to Herne Bay which would also have enabled the school to be enlarged.
The proposal, outlined in previous articles on this website, split parents with many living in the city fiercely opposed to a move to the North Coast. In the other camp, many parents and especially prospective parents living on the North Kent coast around Herne Bay and Whitstable welcomed the proposal for a brand new local school building, with excellent facilities in an area where it was becoming increasingly difficult to access a grammar school place because of rising numbers in Canterbury and along the coast.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the county in Sevenoaks, the county's second proposal to enlarge a grammar school in new premises continues on the tortuous path it has now followed for three years. Planning permission for the proposed annexe and the new Trinity Free School has been approved without difficulty, but there is still no sign of a clear and legal agreement about which school or schools are to run the annexe......
his article looks at updates on a number of previous articles about individual schools: the proposed resiting of Barton Court Grammar School at Herne Bay (updated 20 May); Castle Community College's Special Measures Classification; St John’s Primary School, Canterbury, headteacher resurrected; and the redesignation of Furness Special School.......
Barton Court Grammar School in Canterbury has now gone out to Consultation on its proposed move to Herne Bay, details here. In previous articles I have discussed the proposal which has now been amended and refined to read as follows: "proposal to relocate the School to the former Herne Bay Golf Club site from September 2017 and to expand to 5 forms of entry. We have been offered an opportunity to build a new school within a proposed housing and sports complex development by Newmaquinn Ltd”.
The proposal is being challenged by all non-selective schools in the Canterbury district, on the grounds that there is no call for an extra grammar school class in the area, and to fill it would require the school to admit more students on appeal, who were initially non-selective, changing its character.
Unfortunately, both Barton Court's rationale for increasing its size and a letter to the press from the non-selective heads contain too many errors in the statistics they quote, the cases therefore becoming mutually contradictory. As a result, no conclusions can be drawn from the statistics in either of these two documents. The letter to the press has also gone to BCGS, KCC and the two local MPs.
I have carried out my own analysis of the data, using information from KCC under Freedom of Information requests, and conclude that the BCGS case for expansion is sensible, but not on the grounds they give......
This article looks primarily at recent activity in provision of grammar school in Kent and Medway. In particular it looks at: the proposed Sevenoaks Satellite Grammar School (last week's development); West Kent; North West Kent; Canterbury; Cranbrook; Maidstone; Medway; Shepway and Thanet......
Back in July, I reported the proposal for an East Kent satellite grammar school sponsored by Barton Court Grammar school and based in Herne Bay.
The plan appears to have changed in principle and, rather than a satellite, the proposal is now for Barton Court to shift its base entirely to Herne Bay, replicating the plan put forward in the 1980s to address the shortage of grammar school places on the North Kent Coast. However, this is not just a change of site, the proposal is for Barton Court Grammar to expand to six forms of entry, with the support of the developer of the site on the old Herne Bay Golf Club land, one benefit of a grammar school being the likely enhancement of status for his housing development. The capital cost of the project would be part funded from sale of the current city centre site, part from the developer, although there would probably be a shortfall that may be the main issue. Canterbury City Council is highly supportive of the move, as it would remove a major source of the heavy traffic problems in the City, so it would fall to the school persuading KCC, Canterbury Council and or government to make up any funding gap.
Much of the background rationale for the move is explained in my previous article, although the proposal to move the whole school lock, stock and barrel is far more radical and raises fresh issues and benefits........