West Bridgford School Head Teacher Opposes Free School Proposal

From West Bridgford School website:

You may have heard in the press of the proposals to open a ‘Free School’ in the West Bridgford area. Since this will be a new secondary school in our catchment area I thought it appropriate to bring to your attention a number of issues this may raise and some possible consequences for parents in the area.

I take the view that parents should choose the West Bridgford School because they want to, not because they have to. In that regard I am all for parental choice. We can presently accommodate the number of children living in our catchment area but numbers are set to rise and we have plans to deal with this. We have just made a planning application for an extension to our Post 16 site and for a new 8 classroom block and in February we are spending £1/2m, of what at the end of the day is tax payers’ money, to upgrade our gas, electricity, water and sewerage systems to accommodate these new buildings.

We already have indicative financial support for these projects but the problem this Free School poses is that, if it is approved, this could be at the expense of our plans since the Local Authority and the DfE are unlikely to fund both. Consequently, a parent living in our catchment area may find they will not be able to access a place at their local designated secondary school. Far from increasing parental choice, it is entirely possible it may have the opposite impact for some.

I would, therefore, like to seek your support for this important principle; that all parents living in our catchment area should be able to send their child to their local secondary school if they so wish. If you agree with this principle I would be grateful if you would complete the online form on this web page. We will present our findings to our locally elected politicians and the DfE later this term.

Yours sincerely,

R McDonough (Head Teacher)

The online form is on the school’s website at:



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