Cookham Discussion Board

General Category => Secondary Schools Boundary Change => Topic started by: RedAmberGreen on March 16, 2010, 07:07:38 PM

Title: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: RedAmberGreen on March 16, 2010, 07:07:38 PM
I have a overheard a couple of people (in various outlets in Cookham!) discussing the problems associated with the secondary schools admissions. One of the suggestions was that to overcome the need for the council to build more places is to re-allocate children in Cookham Rise school to the other 2 primary schools and children travelling from Maidenhead / riverside etc to attend Maidenhead primary schools rather than taking up cookham spaces. This will then allow the council to use Cookham Rise for it's original intended purpose as a secondary school for the Cookhams. It removes the need for lots of rebuilding and can be implemented quickly.

When I first heard it I thought 'outrageous' but on reflection I think that this has merit. Any thoughts anyone?

Title: Re: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: MJ Saunders on March 19, 2010, 04:05:03 PM
Your first thought that this was 'outlandish' should stand.

The 3 Cookham Primaries serve a large area beyond the immediate boundaries of the Cookham villages and for which they are the nearest and most trusted schools.  Their reputations have continued to blossom in recent years and they all now have strong teams and dedicated Headteachers.  In contrast to your suggestion, the Primary Schools deserve substantial investment from the Borough (and in two cases the Church of England) to enhance and expand one of Cookham's proudest civic services - the high quality education of our children.

MJ Saunders - RBWM Cookham Councillor and local schools fiasco activist

Title: Re: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: Strims on March 21, 2010, 09:57:24 AM
I love the idea of brainstorming something like this outlandish suggestion because even if it doesn't have merit new ideas can come up.  My thoughts are:

Secondary schools need a significant amount of resource which probably couldn't be provided within the buildings at Cookham Rise.  The school there is designed for little people so I am not sure how it would fare tranisitioned to young men & women.  I think it would be worth asking the question why was the school moved to Furze Platt in the first place.

Part of the attraction of Furze Platt is that it expands children's horizons hugely.  There is a great social mix there, fantstatic resources and a breadth of teaching.  It would be easy to get cloistered in a Cookham only zone at the age when young people need to grow.

If Cookham Rise was to become a secondary school then a signifiacnt number of children (200+ I should think) would have to move to Cookham Dean or Holy Trinity - significant investment would be required to manage this - in addition to the investment required to take the Rise up to the required standard for a secondary school.

On the face of it, I like the idea but for me, having thought about it, I don't think it would work.

Title: Re: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: Bagheera on March 21, 2010, 06:14:32 PM
I am inclined to agree with you strims.  The infrastructure for a secondary school is now much more complex than it was in the 1960s. 

To ensure they are fully used, a critical mass is needed.  There are insufficient children in the Cookhams to provide it.  In theory you could draw in from outside the village but the obvious places would be Furze Platt and Bourne End, both of which have  their own secondary schools already.

Title: Re: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: RedAmberGreen on March 25, 2010, 03:21:13 PM
I tend to agree with the comments as well, but thought it was interesting nonetheless that people were trying to come up with alternatives.

Another one that my friend came up with was to refurbish the currently closed Maidenhead College site as a 'Sixth Form' school and transfer all the 6th form pupils at Desborough, Furze Platt, Altwood, Cox Green, Newlands etc to it making it a specialist 6th form academy. This would then free up space in all the schools in Maidenhead.

The old Maidenhead college site is relatively small so would suit the volume of students passing through. Would probably mean many millions less than building a new one. I agree though, no one said it would be easy!

Title: Re: Outlandish suggestion?
Post by: Pongo on March 25, 2010, 04:13:36 PM
We could also consider having middle schools which are quite popular around the country. They reckon the best sized school is around 500 pupils. I don't know where I read it, so it may or may not be true.