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Western Road Primary School

On 14 Dec 2015 at 1:16pm Poppy wrote:
Does anyone have any experience good or bad about Western Road Primary School? We are looking at moving to the area and looking at some properties I have enquired about schools and this school has 3 places and the rest have none. It is very close to a house we like too but am slightly concerned as I have read some bad things but I would like to know current views as maybe it has improved. Many thanks
On 14 Dec 2015 at 2:23pm Deep Stoat wrote:
Here we go again. To save everyone the bother:
- some people think this school used to be brilliant but these days it's not anymore
- some people think this school is great and want to make negative comments about other schools in the area (that's me)
- some people have never rated this school and/or hate you
As with any school you'll get the full range of opinion and since it's all coming from anonymous eejits like me it's very hard to judge. It's a very subjective and personal judgment in any event.
Go and have a look round during school hours and you'll get a much better idea whether it will suit you than asking on here.
On 14 Dec 2015 at 2:35pm Tipex wrote:
Stoat - I agree with your sentiment, if not your delivery. I went to their open day recently and the headmaster appeared suprised that anyone turned up. He muttered platitudes about the school awkwardly while showing a amateurish PowerPoint presentation before announcing that their prospectus wasn't ready so not avaliable. We then got a tour of the school by 2 unenthusiastic kids who led us into numerous lessons where we all stared at each other awkwardly for 2 mins before heading to the next awkward class. To me it felt like the energy and passion (kinda essential in a school) had been surgically removed. from the school. But you're right Stoat - it's so subjective and I'd recommend visiting unannounced.
On 14 Dec 2015 at 4:09pm SHS wrote:
Excellent commentary Tipex!
On 14 Dec 2015 at 7:02pm Hugh Jarce wrote:
None of the Lewes schools are much cop. I recommend Hamsey and then Chailey.
On 14 Dec 2015 at 8:34pm Sue wrote:
Hugh Jarce! You seemed to me taking out of yours. Lewes is very well served with a variety of good schools. Some parents just seem so paranoid, remember when you just went to your local school, mixed with the other local kids and even walked?

On 14 Dec 2015 at 8:39pm Cuban Raft Rider wrote:
For those gullible enough to ask a question as important about education and trust anything on this forum there is always Ringmer.
You can look at the published tables but the bottom line on them means nothing when all it really takes for some sgreat education is the right teacher that meets your child's needs without having a horrendous behavior problem in the class.
Good luck
On 14 Dec 2015 at 8:57pm Aparent wrote:
We are very happy with Western Road. It's a lovely school with great teachers and a nurturing atmosphere. Visit the school and you can make your own mind up. We picked it over several other Lewes schools and our children love it. Don't believe everything you read!
On 14 Dec 2015 at 9:06pm Annmarie wrote:
My son went to this school it was awful. I moved him to Iford and kingston he had caught up in all school work within 6 months of being there and loved the outside side they have. I think they have spaces as planing to expand. I'm my opinion and exsperiance I would only recommend Southover or Iford and Kingston. Give them a call and have a look around.
On 14 Dec 2015 at 9:41pm Hipster wrote:
Travelling into Brighton on the bus one afternoon, I'd say Lewes schools are full of Brighton kids !! Very rowdy !!
On 14 Dec 2015 at 11:00pm Paul wrote:
its a good school - all the schools in Lewes are nice. A lot of Southover parents are snobbish and more right wing than most other parents you find elsewhere in Lewes but the school is fine if you can put up with all the religious stuff.
On 15 Dec 2015 at 2:25am Fairmeadow wrote:
All the Lewes schools are fine and all of them are pretty well full. So are the village schools round about. If you are lucky enough to be offered a place at your local school, take it. I'm not surprised the Western Road head was ill-prepared for scrutiny, as Lewes schools don't have to compete for students.
Please do not import these DFL attitudes into Lewes. Send your kids to the local school and, as a parent, help the staff keep it great, especially by making sure your kids have the right attitudes.
On 15 Dec 2015 at 10:08am Deep Stoat wrote:
Sorry Poppy, on reflection I could have been more friendly in my reply. Allow me to correct myself.
Firstly, welcome to Lewes, hope you like it here! Secondly, I don't think you can go too far wrong choosing a primary school in Lewes.
All the best
On 15 Dec 2015 at 6:31pm bastian wrote:
all schools are suffering from OFSTED disease-where the teachers have to do exactly what they are told in order to tick the right boxes, which leaves little time for teaching and all imagination has been drained away through beurocracey. Having said that, it used to be a very good school with a very high maths achievment. All schools are good in Lewes, and they all suffer for OFSTED.
On 16 Dec 2015 at 6:34am Earl of Lewes wrote:
It's not enough to say that all of the schools are fine - some have better headteachers than others and some are more suited to certain types of children.
Western Road has been going through a number of problems over the years, after once being 'Excellent', but see what you think. The intake tends to be the more 'Bohemian'part of Lewes.
Southover is the nearest thing you'll get to private education - good if your child's academic. Not good if you don't want them worrying about tests and homework. Some of the parents seem to be more conspicuously well-off, which makes some people take against the school's 4x4 image, but I think it's a mixture.
Wallands has lots of beautiful green space and isn't a religious school. Sadly, the headteacher there is a box ticker who talks a good school but doesn't manage the very poor performance of a few teachers and the inadequate SENCO.
Malling apparently has a great head and staff, but the intake is more mixed.
Don't know much about Pells, but sadly many see it as the school that takes the kids from the poorest backgrounds and don't even bother looking at it.
St Pancras is a tiny Catholic school - I know non-Catholic parents who were happy with the school. The grounds are tiny, but they've made the best of it.
Hamsey is a lovely small school with a 'forest school' and a really great atmosphere, but you have to drive there as it's in Cooksbridge.
This is all gleaned from other parents and many may disagree with this - there's no cast iron consensus. I'd ask yourself what your child's like. If they're sporty, try Wallands, if they're shy, pick a small school. Also think about how far you want to walk - avoid driving if you can. Don't get too bogged down with OFSTED results. The most important thing is a happy school with a good head.
On 16 Dec 2015 at 1:32pm Gary wrote:
Sending your kids to the right school can be a very tough and difficult decision with all the different and varied information out there.
I am pleased you are using the excellent Lewes Forum to help you come to your decision.
Kind regards,
On 16 Dec 2015 at 4:44pm Linda Lovelice wrote:
Deep Stoat you are awful
On 16 Dec 2015 at 7:42pm Bored wrote:
Take a look at Barcombe, fantastic school, great atmosphere and great teachers and an outstanding posted report in all categories(if that matters to you). We went with our gut feeling long before the ousted inspection and thankfully we were right. Good luck
On 16 Dec 2015 at 7:43pm Bored wrote:
On 17 Dec 2015 at 5:00pm Belladonna wrote:
Earl of Lewes - I echo all of your comments.
I would add that you should try and go to a school your kids can walk to - no child should be driven to school unless they have mobility issues.
And visit the schools. We liked both Wallands and Western Road and got a place at WR. It's been through many changes since then - two new heads, but sounds like it's a bit more stable now. To be honest none of the schools in Lewes should be bad, given the largely middle class intakes (direct correlation between how good a school is and the amount of ABC1 parents) but my impression of Lewes schools in General is that they 'rest of their laurels' because of the 'pushy parent' intake, who can afford to pay for extra tutoring (and do) if little Jonny needs it. So I certainly felt WR wasn't as dynamic or vibrant as the previous (London) school my kids attended, but it was very 'nice'
On 17 Dec 2015 at 8:24pm Earl of Lewes wrote:
I'm disillutioned with what I've seen at Wallands in recent years, where the poor performance of certain members of staff hasn't been managed. It's not fair on the children or those teachers who are excellent. Every new year is like Russian Roulette - wondering whether your child will get the dedicated, inspirational teacher or the one who can't cope. There is one particular teacher there who shouldn't be in the profession - telling children that they're "rubbish at maths" is very destructive. The job of a teacher is to identify the struggling children and give them the help they need to gain confidence.
On 20 Dec 2015 at 10:36pm Toby wrote:
Its a great school, both my kids love it. The headteacher after Gary Thompson wasn't fabulous, but the new one is excellent.

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