Connecting Crouch End and Hornsey with news, views and information
PUPILS 910, aged 3-11
It's enormous, Coleridge, with a yearly intake (120) to rival those of your average entire prep school. But the tinies are tucked away in the grand old West site and the bigger ones in the more rambling East site, with separate entrances for different year groups so 'you feel like you're dropping off at somewhere really rather small', says a mother. Teachers are bright and funny and incredibly enthusiastic, whipping out a guitar to explain a point, and getting all the kids romping around in the outdoor classroom in all weathers. From Year 2 there are meditation and capoeira clubs, and there's lots of parental involvement and bake sales, which makes it a proper social hub for the whole of Crouch End - 'if your kids don't go to Coleridge, you feel left out,' we're told. The catchment area is hanky-sized and families move within yards to get in - any further than three or four blocks away and you've got no chance.
The interesting thing will be what happens to Highgate Wood catchment area this March as the first 4 form Y6 at Coleridge get their secondary places. Anecdotally there seems to be a slackening off of parents moving to Muswell Hill so I expect the south edge of the catchment area will come in significantly from where it is now which is just south of Mountview Road.
I had formed the impression that there was less mobility than before, which may be a function of the housing market and the way in which trading up has got do expensive (here on Dresden Road N19 we are seeing basement conversions happening, which is sign that its getting better value to do that expensive thing for more space, than move.
Which feeds into my point about fewer babies and more teenagers...and feeds into Betty's point about demand for secondary places....
Unfortunately the rather ill tempered (well it makes ME feel ill tempered) debate about what should happen to the old Ashmount site has all been a bout a choice between council housing, which is needed, and a new Free School, which is not needed. Whether it should have been considered for a secondary school was an option never properly aired.
It seems that minutes after worrying about primary school places and we have to start worrying about secondary school places! Highgate Wood's catchment may well shrink - but on the plus side, there is another overlooked school in the area - Greig City Academy. Good Ofsted, small class sizes, lots of enrichment - and in a good position for shops etc - Sainsbury on the way of course! There's such a kerfuffle in year 5 /6 with people leaving town etc but for those who stay everything does seem to turn out just fine in the end. (http://www.greigcityacademy.co.uk)