Visitors to Hampton Online may be interested in a proposal from St Mary's Church to open a Church Free School at The Oldfield Centre, Oldfield Road.

The proposal promises:

- dedication to ensuring that children of all abilities reach their full potential

- commitment to educational excellence

- a small school where every child is known and valued

- Christian ethos, but without regard to religious affiliation or church attendance

- emphasis on the arts

- teaching guided by the National Curriculum

- no fees

The one form entry (30 places) school would be sponsored by the London Diocese Board for Schools which supports 149 schoold in London - 6 in the Borough of Richmond such as St Mary's and St Peter's in Teddington.

Priority admission would be allocated to those who live in, or south of, Oldfield Road/Station Road, without regard to religious affiliation or church attendance. Expressions of intention from parents who have children who would like to be enrolled in reception in 2013 and 2014 will be collected.

There will be two open days to which all are welcome: Thursday 12 January at 9.15am-12.15pm and Saturday 14 January from 9.15am-12.15pm. These will be drop-in sessions with short presentations every hour at a quarter to the hour.

Further details are available at: www.hampton-church-school.org.uk

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I read in the Richmond and Twickenham Times, and have also seen full page ads in the Richmond magazine, for another school interested in opening on this site.  This one is the Maharishi Free School. At their Public Meeting  in mid-December they had 150 people attend and 78% of parents registered their intention to send their children to the school.  Plans of the school were also unveiled. 

How many pupils would be at the Church school eventually?  Would this mean more cars in what will be an incredibly busy road once Waitrose opens.  

"Priority admission would be allocated to those who live in, or south of, Oldfield Road/Station Road, without regard to religious affiliation or church attendance"


Hopefully parents who want to send their children there will be from the local area so will walk. I think it's a great idea for to have a Christian school open; it will give Hampton (already noted for good schools) another choice. 

The Maharishi School is intending to be age 4-16, whereas the Church School is Primary (4-11) - although granted a lot of Secondary School students walk/bus/train. The Church school is planning a one-form entry of 30 students per class - i.e. an intake of roughly 210 children over the 7 primary years? I am guessing here, but at one-form entry, the Maharishi school would be taking 360? 

Please refer to the website below, and do take note of the 'Black Hole of Hampton'. There is a large swathe of our Hampton children being sent to Lower Sunbury or Teddington, because Hampton schools cannot accomodate our children's primary school needs. The Maharishi is much more likely to bring in children from further afield (note how advertising is heavy in Richmond) - we need a Primary School to accommodate our children in Hampton. 

https://sites.google.com/site/hamptonchurchschool/home

This issue came up yesterday at the Hampton and Hampton North Working Together Group meeting.  As I understand it, whereas the Church School would be open to all, the Maharishi School requires at least one parent to undertake a Transcendental Medication course at around £500 a time.  If true, this would seem to be an indirect way of getting extra funding whilst purporting to be a "free" school.  Given the current Government's support for free schools, I trust there is a mechanism to ensure that "free schools" are actually free.

Further to Trevor's point, Richard Scott , the Proposer of the Maharishi School, has told audiences at their presentations that the one-off TM courses for children would be free, funded by a charitable body whose name was not disclosed.  He informed us that a child's practising of TM was a stipulation of attendance at the school, but parental/family involvement was also 'encouraged' to ensure that pupils flourished with the technique.  He added that without practising as a family during weekends and holidays, the technique would not be as effective and pupils' learning would suffer as a consequence.  It was stated that if the technique did not appeal to parents, then maybe the school was not for them or their children.  This presumes that there is choice, or that the new school will relieve places at other local schools.

The training of parents/carers would be on a sliding scale matched to income.  Charles Cunningham, Director of Communication for Maharishi Foundation in the UK, would be in charge of teaching pupils and parents outside of the school environment:

http://www.t-m.org.uk/meditation-twickenham.shtml

In comparison, Hampton Church School would appear to make no financial/lifestyle demands on pupils and their families, constrained as it is by it's definition as a faith school, requiring a non-faith intake of up to 50% of pupils. Also, the proposed class size is 30, rather than 24 at the Maharishi School which will be 2FE operating a 50% lottery, 50% proximity (i.e. Hampton) intake. This would result, across 12 year groups, in 576 pupils ages 4-16 at full capacity.  I hope that clarifies a couple of points.

Gareth

Thanks for the clarification - sorry I misrepresented the payment issue.  I, too, attended a TM course some years ago (with a different provider) and paid a percentage of my income, so this seems common practice.  I actually found TM difficult as it requires very quiet surroundings, which are not easily found in a house full of screaming kids!  There are other techniques which I have found more convenient.  Which begs the question as to why the Maharishi Foundation consider that the child's education would suffer without TM.  Most children don't use TM (or any other relaxation technique, for that matter), but don't usually suffer as a result - most of the problems seem to relate to unsupportive parents and teachers.

When prospective parents think about sending a child to one of the new Free Schools, it may be worth considering the FAQs on the Government Web site link below and carefully considering how each of the schools would answer these questions.

http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/typesofschools/frees...

One of the most often asked is about the schools curriculum and persumably there would be a contrasting response from the two schools for this area of religious education and collective worship.

http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/typesofschools/frees...

 

For further detail if required on the Marahashi Religion http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transcendental_Meditation 

Oldfield House School is the third Marahashi school in the UK, with the two others situated close by to local Transcendental Movement communities (ttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transcendental_Meditation_movement) , the first in Skelmersdale and the second which is due to open in Woodbridge Suffolk.

Although both of these schools are situated close by to a local community of TM practitioners  or Marahshi Community, it is not known if a local Marahashi community is practicing in the Hampton area?

 

Re the proposed Hampton Church School - we are planning 7 year groups of 30 = 210. This is about one third of the Maharishi Foundations proposal. Further we are meeting a local need and would expect a high percentage of our children to walk to the school. 

Mrs Jane Cook said:

I read in the Richmond and Twickenham Times, and have also seen full page ads in the Richmond magazine, for another school interested in opening on this site.  This one is the Maharishi Free School. At their Public Meeting  in mid-December they had 150 people attend and 78% of parents registered their intention to send their children to the school.  Plans of the school were also unveiled. 

How many pupils would be at the Church school eventually?  Would this mean more cars in what will be an incredibly busy road once Waitrose opens.  

"Faith school" is a specific term in regard to Academy / Free Schools although many people use it to describe any school with any religious aspect. With specific reference to the proposed (Anglican) Church Free School it would NOT be categorised as a Faith School (I know that sounds odd, but that is correct).  This link helps http://www.churchofengland.org/education/faqs.aspx


Gareth Box said:

Further to Trevor's point, Richard Scott , the Proposer of the Maharishi School, has told audiences at their presentations that the one-off TM courses for children would be free, funded by a charitable body whose name was not disclosed.  He informed us that a child's practising of TM was a stipulation of attendance at the school, but parental/family involvement was also 'encouraged' to ensure that pupils flourished with the technique.  He added that without practising as a family during weekends and holidays, the technique would not be as effective and pupils' learning would suffer as a consequence.  It was stated that if the technique did not appeal to parents, then maybe the school was not for them or their children.  This presumes that there is choice, or that the new school will relieve places at other local schools.

The training of parents/carers would be on a sliding scale matched to income.  Charles Cunningham, Director of Communication for Maharishi Foundation in the UK, would be in charge of teaching pupils and parents outside of the school environment:

http://www.t-m.org.uk/meditation-twickenham.shtml

In comparison, Hampton Church School would appear to make no financial/lifestyle demands on pupils and their families, constrained as it is by it's definition as a faith school, requiring a non-faith intake of up to 50% of pupils. Also, the proposed class size is 30, rather than 24 at the Maharishi School which will be 2FE operating a 50% lottery, 50% proximity (i.e. Hampton) intake. This would result, across 12 year groups, in 576 pupils ages 4-16 at full capacity.  I hope that clarifies a couple of points.

Alison

Free Schools have great flexibility in e.g. staffing and curriculum. With regard to the proposed Hampton Church School 

  • all our classroom teachers would be regular qualified teachers. It may be that e.g special art / music / sport teachers might be used - but the core staff would be trained and qualified as in mainstream schools. 
  • A Free School has to partly justify itself as different to mainstream schools. Our difference will centre around the ethos and values of the school - not the content or balance of the curriculum. Being helped to develop a curriculum by a church school in the mainstream sector (which must follow the National Curriculum) illustrates that the Hampton school would offer a primary education that everyone would recognise. We hope to demonstrate this in our open sessions on Thurs 12 and Sat 14 Jan 9.15-12.15,
With regard to assemblies and RE both schools should follow the law. Naturally a church school would be expected to deliver these aspects of school life with enthusiasm and flair. 
(The Maharishi Foundation presently run just one school in Lancashire, until Sept 11 it was an independent fee-paying school ). 


Alison Cheers Insurance Brokers said:

When prospective parents think about sending a child to one of the new Free Schools, it may be worth considering the FAQs on the Government Web site link below and carefully considering how each of the schools would answer these questions.

http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/typesofschools/frees...

One of the most often asked is about the schools curriculum and persumably there would be a contrasting response from the two schools for this area of religious education and collective worship.

http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/typesofschools/frees...

 

For further detail if required on the Marahashi Religion http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transcendental_Meditation 

Oldfield House School is the third Marahashi school in the UK, with the two others situated close by to local Transcendental Movement communities (ttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transcendental_Meditation_movement) , the first in Skelmersdale and the second which is due to open in Woodbridge Suffolk.

Although both of these schools are situated close by to a local community of TM practitioners  or Marahshi Community, it is not known if a local Marahashi community is practicing in the Hampton area?

 

Hello

I'm quite ineterested in this topic, but I'm a little confused.

Is it still to be agreed who takes on the running of the School, or are both parties sharing the site? I assume its one or the other? If so, how and when will this be decided?

I live in Oldfield Road and have a little baby boy (3 months), so thinking ahead this could be ideal for us.

M

Murdoch

We are not proposing to share the site with a proposed Maharishi School. 

Both parties will submit their proposals to the Dept. for Education who may agree to one school, or turn down both schools. ( It is also possible that they will initially agree to both schools - this is because the situation of the school is not a primary concern in the initial acceptance of the bid. Schools can win acceptance and have no site identified.)

Please note parents to do not need to choose between the proposals at this stage. They are being asked to pledge to give their first choice when they select schools. I think it inconceivable that in autumn 2012 when parents will be selecting schools for 2013 that the two free schools will be going head to head on this site. The choice folks are being asked to make now is more would they choose Hampton Infants or  either of the Free School on the Oldfield site. For people in Hampton South -  they do not presently have a choice for Hampton Infants because of under-provision there - our bid would guarantee places in this area (upto the capacity of the year's intake: 30)

I hope that's clearer!


Murdoch said:

Hello

I'm quite ineterested in this topic, but I'm a little confused.

Is it still to be agreed who takes on the running of the School, or are both parties sharing the site? I assume its one or the other? If so, how and when will this be decided?

I live in Oldfield Road and have a little baby boy (3 months), so thinking ahead this could be ideal for us.

M

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