Central library plan is perfect for a primary
I WOULD like to contribute to the debate surrounding the application to use part of the Central Library for the Cathedral Primary School. Misconceptions persist that Cathedral Primary School is somehow exclusive or private and this is some nefarious deal whereby the council hands over access to the lower two floors of a public building to an exclusive clique. This is plainly untrue. The primary school would be in the heart of Bristol for the city's children.
It will be accessible to any parent who applies on behalf of their child and is lucky enough to get a place. It therefore, belongs in the heart of the city and the library is the perfect situation. In many ways, the Cathedral Primary is a model of what a modern comprehensive inner-city primary school should and could be.
As a parent of a child in the school's new reception year, I didn't have to own an expensive house in an exclusive area to gain access to a good school. I wasn't excluded from applying by living too far away, or by having the wrong post code. I simply applied to a school that has a strong academic vision and a passion and commitment to music and the arts that matches my own. It was a lottery of sorts, and we won.
There are several other benefits including income for the council, the renovation of College Square and alleviating the shortage of primary school places. Nearly 5,000 places will need to be found in the near future. They need to go to school. So where? Mobile classrooms stacked in the playgrounds of existing schools? Secondary schools doubling up as primaries?
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The council simply cannot build schools to accommodate these coming children. The Cathedral Primary is an exciting, vibrant, school that belongs in the heart of a vibrant, exciting Bristol city centre.