Parents oppose Edmund Waller expansion as wrong solution to Primary places crisis

As previously reported, the Borough of Lewisham is suffering from a severe shortage of Primary School places, the result of a local baby boom, a growing population and the area's increasing popularity with young families.

As part of its belated response to the problem, Lewisham Council has proposed to double the size of Edmund Waller Primary School in Telegraph Hill. However, with the decision due to be made in December, a group of parents is campaigning against the changes on the basis that it will squash twice as many kids in to the same space, providing places in the wrong part of the borough, rather than where the shortage is most accutely-felt, around Ladywell, Lewisham and Hither Green.

Phillipa explains:

Living in Tyrwhitt Road, I am one of many families in Brockley that were affected by this years shortage of Primary School places.

Unable to get our daughter into any of the local schools, we finally settled on a place at Edmund Waller, but not after a fight. The school is absolutely fantastic and I feel very grateful for her place, but it is still almost 2 miles for us to travel every morning and by no means local having implications on our local support network and integration with neighbours and the local community - most of whom's kids go to nearby Ashmead, Myatt Garden or John Stainer.

Now, less than 6 weeks into the first term, we hear that Lewisham Council plan to expand Edmund Waller into a 4 form 'super school'. Not only will this have disastrous implications to the resources and quality of the school, a school which is now thriving thanks to great leadership, but it goes absolutely no way to addressing the real issue with Primary School places in Lewisham, an issue which is concentrated in pockets of Brockley - namely Ladywell and Hilly Fields, as well as parts of Lee and Hither Green.

Once again I find myself part of a campaign, but rather than NIMBYs simply opposing change to their beloved school, this is a group that have first hand experience of how wrong Lewisham Council are getting things, just as they miscalculated when they rebuilt Ashmead as a single form school a few years back and allowed Prendergast Vale school to remain single form during its rebuild despite plonking hundreds of new homes on its doorstep.

Please can readers do everything they can to support our campaign to protect Edmund Waller from expansion and force the Council and the Government to address the real issue of Primary School places in this popular London borough.

Click here to sign our petition.


Brockley Central Label Cloud