A New Free School for Altrincham

Free school for Altrincham as North Cestrian changes its status

In September, the long established North Cestrian Grammar School re-opened as North Cestrian School, a non-selective free school. North Cestrian, which was established in 1951, will, along with Altrincham Grammar School for boys become part of the Hamblin Education Trust named after North Cestrian founder and former headmaster of Altrincham Grammar School for Boys, Walter Hamblin.

Free schools receive their payments directly from the Government, but are not controlled by the local education authority. Under its new status the school will still be able to set its own extended curriculum, term dates and length of school day. Its governing body will oversee and operate the school, but pupils will no longer sit an entrance exam and there will be no fees.

In September, North Cestrian School welcomed 125 new Year 7 students. However, the Dunham Road school will close its sixth form in 2017, as the funding agreement signed by the Department for Education only covers a free school for 11 to 16-year-olds.

Lee Bergin, headmaster of North Cestrian School, said

“Demand for school places in Altrincham is extremely high and we look forward to welcoming boys and girls from across the area to North Cestrian, increasing choice for parents and pupils.

Moving forward, we are eagerly anticipating working with our colleagues in the Hamblin Education Trust to continue to provide an excellent standard of education for local 11-16 year olds. We are also pleased to have secured funding for the refurbishment of all classrooms, new dining facilities, a new DT, Food and Science building, and redesigned Art and Music facilities, providing an excellent learning environment"

The school’s mission has always been to provide high standards and broad academic and extra-curricular opportunities in a relatively small community where each pupil can be recognised as an individual. Headmaster Lee Bergin said: "We’re excited to have the opportunity to provide the same high standard of independent grammar school education and pastoral care we’re known for, but without having to charge fees. We’re now able to help meet the demand from parents in the area for a greater choice of educational establishment”

Admission for September 2017 will be through Trafford’s Common Application Form. The school catchment area, which is one of the criteria if the school is oversubscribed, will be all postcodes WA14 and WA15.  Please see the school’s website for the Admissions Policy.  

For more information see www.northcestrian.co.uk, call the school on  0161 928 1856 or email s.roby@northcestrian.co.uk.



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