We live in Bradwell Common and have children who are in year 5 at Summerfield school. Along with lot of other parents in the school, we have been thinking hard about our children’s next step in life and their choice of secondary school. I am shocked and, quite frankly, extremely worried to learn that not only are my sons chances of getting a place at his preferred schools have gone from slim to none due to the fact that he would not have attended a “feeder” school, but that our children in fact have absolutely no choice of school as the LA will simply decline their application and offer a place at the only school within our catchment area: Stantonbury. No other choice.
I have spoken with other parents about this, some who are in the same position as me and considering their child’s options and others who have made their applications and all been declined because they are out of catchment, only being offered a place at Stantonbury. There are many parents who are dismayed at the system. Most other areas in Milton Keynes have a choice of 2 or 3 schools in their catchment area, good schools. Why are we limited to only one? Not only is the application process for secondary school misleading as the LA ask you to put a choice of 3 schools, but our children are more or less being forced to attend a school that is less than mediocre, too big to provide a decent education to all pupils and put pupils, from what I have been told, last on their priority list.
We know that a child’s success through school does depend on what the individual child puts in to it. However the child has to be given the right opportunities and attitude too. Stantonbury has had a consistently bad reputation for years and, while some students may come out with reasonable grades, they constantly fail others. By forcing our children to attend this school as the LA are saying they have no other option, our children are being disadvantaged right from the beginning of their secondary education.
This predicament is not limited only to this side of Milton Keynes. There are other estates that only have one secondary school within their catchment and, again, a school that continues to fail. This petition for a change is for all areas of Milton Keynes.
We know that there are parents who are willing to fight this unfair allocation process. How can a few estates in milton keynes only have the “choice” of one school for secondary education, a school that doesn’t even provide a good level of education? Why should our children be put at a disadvantage because of the area they live in, which is not a bad area, and because of the lack of other schools in such a wide area? Our children deserve better than this. The choice of secondary education should be fair to all children across Milton Keynes.
What we want is for every estate in Milton Keynes to have at least two secondary schools within their catchment area, thereby giving a choice. Catchment areas should be revised to ensure a fair choice for all areas of Milton Keynes.
We also suggest that Stantonbury Secondary School is too big. It is one of the biggest schools in the UK and it shows that it is too much for one head teacher to handle. Stantonbury Secondary School should be split in to two separate secondary schools with two separate head teachers and a complete overhaul of the current teaching staff to bring the level of secondary education provided up to an acceptable level and to ensure that all staff have the ability to cope with this.
If you agree, sign and forward.