Fight for reception gets tougher as more kids swell primary school demand

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Photo: Oleg Doroshin ┃Shutterstock.com

The contest for a place in a favoured primary school is an annual ritual causing anxiety to parents all over London.   Many schools in neighbourhoods with lots of children have tiny catchment areas of just a few hundred metres radius due to the pressure on reception places.

The bad news is that the situation is going to get worse before its get better. Parents seeking a place in 2016/17 will face the stiffest competition yet, due to simple demographics.

Between 2001/02 and 2011/12 the number of births went up by 28%, an extra 30,000 children. The birth rate peaked in 2011/12 and those children are destined to become the class of 2016/17.

The birth rate has fallen in the past 2 years but forecasting by the GLA Intelligence Unit shows that the 677,000 children attending state primaries in this school year will climb by 60,000 over the coming decade.

The increase in demand for primary school places is focused on East London boroughs that coincide with areas of housing development.

Tower Hamlets is projected to be the borough with the highest growth in demand, rising by nearly 7,000. More than 4,000 extra places are needed in Havering and Newham, nearly that amount in Barking and Dagenham, and 3,500 in Redbridge.

Primary school demand

Kensington and Chelsea is the only borough that is forecast to see a fall in demand.

The GLA emphasises that the increase in demand does not automatically suggest a shortfall in places, as it has not factored in the planned expansion of existing schools or the building of new ones. Many schools have expanded to take on growing numbers but a further 2,000 primary classes will be needed over the next 10 years.

As the numbers begin to taper due to the falling birth rate of the past couple of years the problem will filter through to the secondary schools and, as reported by Urbs, that could mean even greater challenges for education in London.

Source data

See also

105,000 extra secondary pupils pose huge challenge for capital’s schools

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Private school? Depends where you live

 

Cheaper in the Championship but many fans still paying some premier prices

Picure: © Photospook ┃Creative Commons

Picure: © Photospook ┃Creative Commons

For most London fans the cost of following football is considerably cheaper in the Championship or lower leagues than the top flight, but there are still some premier rate prices being charged for lower league football.

The average season ticket price for a Championship club in London is much lower than the Premier League, as you might expect. The average for the most expensive season ticket was £651 while the average price for the cheapest season ticket in the Premier League is £658.

But the averages hide some surprising facts. Data gathered by the BBC in its Price of Football Study shows that the most expensive season ticket at Crystal Palace and newly promoted Watford are below £700 but a top of the range season ticket at relegated QPR is £719 and at Fulham it is £839, the highest in the Championship.

The ticket pricing reflects clubs adjusting after promotion and relegation. Watford went up and their cheapest season ticket rose by £19 to £385. QPR fell out of the Premier League and their cheapest season ticket was reduced by more than £100 but is still £389. Adjustments are also made on match day tickets. Watford increased their cheapest match day ticket from £14 to £36. At QPR it is down £1 to £24.

Football season ticket championship

There’s a similar scenario at Millwall. The cheapest and most expensive season tickets at The Den are frozen at last season’s prices although the club is now playing League 1 football. The cheapest match day ticket has been reduced by £1.

Leyton Orient dropped the cheapest season ticket price by £40 on being relegated to League 2 but at £180 it is still a fiver more than Charlton’s cheapest and they’re playing in the Championship

Football season tickets L 1 2

 

Fans always have the option to buy single tickets rather than one for the season, but the price of a big day out at the game does not come cheap either. Urbs took the median ticket price and added a replica shirt, programme, a pie and a cup of tea to calculate the cost of a one off match day experience. Our calculations show that it is cheaper than the Premier League but there’s not a huge difference between the Championship and League 2.

Football match day championship

Football match day L1 2

The biggest cost is the replica shirt, particular if you want the orange and black hoops of Barnet, just up from the Conference this season, but with a Premier League price on the kit. One saving you do make at The Hive is the price of a pie.  Barnet don’t have any, and neither do AFC Wimbledon.

Following football is packed with highs and lows for fans, but one thing remains consistent, it is punishing on the pocket.

Source data

See also

Season ticket price freeze but what’s the cost of a day out for a less loyal fan?

Met earns millions for policing football but costs are higher still

A poor day out in the Prem is away fans’ verdict on most London grounds