Views sought on proposed catchment area changes for Thurston Community College, near Bury St Edmunds, and Northgate High School in Ipswich
There are proposals to amend the school admissions catchment areas for two Suffolk secondary schools.
Suffolk County Council (SCC), which is the admissions authority for community and voluntary controlled schools in Suffolk, is currently asking for people’s views about its proposed admission arrangements for the 2025/2026 school year.
SCC is proposing the catchment area boundary for Thurston Community College is redrawn to only include the current housing within its catchment area.
It says on its website this is in preparation for the upcoming Cattishall housing development, in Great Barton, which has had outline planning approved for 1,375 homes.
The proposal is for the open fields within the current catchment area, shaded in blue on the map, to sit outside of Thurston Community College’s catchment area from the 2025/2026 school year. There are currently no properties in the area proposed for removal.
“Sybil Andrews Academy’s accommodation already includes additional school places to meet the new demand from the Cattishall Housing Development,” the SCC website says.
“The nearest suitable school for the Cattishall Housing Development will be Sybil Andrews Academy and will be under two miles from the home address.”
It also says the size of Thurston Community College’s catchment area is generally appropriate to meet the demand for school places from within the current housing developments located within it. It adds that SET Ixworth School is also located in the community college’s catchment area and supports local demand for school places.
SCC is proposing to redraw the catchment area boundary for Northgate High School to include the current housing, except for Red House Farm.
This means that the open fields within the current catchment area and Red House Farm would sit outside of Northgate High School’s catchment area from the 2025/2026 school year. There are currently no pupils living in the area is proposed to be removed.
The SCC website says: “The size of Northgate High School’s catchment area is generally appropriate for the current housing developments within it.
“However, there are sometimes more catchment area applications than school places available and so it would not be fair, or lawful, to expand the number of properties in the catchment area substantially, as this would impact on already established residents in the catchment area.
“The upcoming Ipswich Garden Suburb Housing Development is expected to include 3,500 homes and a new secondary school. This includes ‘Henley Gate’ which is currently under construction, with ‘Fonnereau’ next and ‘Red House’, the third phase, moving through the planning approval processes.”
Until the new secondary school is opened, the nearest suitable school for Henley Gate will be Ormiston Endeavour Academy; some of Fonnereau will be nearer to Ormiston Endeavour Academy and some nearer to Northgate High School and Red House will be nearer to Northgate High School, the website says.
See here for details on the consultation.
It is running until November 29.