School says catchment claim ‘untrue’

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An Ashfield secondary school has dismissed reports in the national media that it has the smallest catchment area in the UK.

Several national newspapers reported over the weekend that Quarrydale Academy, in Sutton, has a catchment of only 187 metres.

Their reports were based on a study by admissions website FindaSchool, which claimed that Quarrydale topped the list of UK schools with the smallest catchments.

The school, however, has described the findings as inaccurate, saying that its catchment area is roughly 12 square miles and the 187m figure quoted in the media is actually based on the last student who was admitted to the Academy from outside of its catchment area.

The academy currently has many students who live outside of catchment, with many living further than 2.5 miles away. A statement issued by governors said: “The initial report stating that the academy has a catchment of 187m is simply not true.

“Our actual catchment is on a par with some of our larger peers and we have our local primaries in the family of schools nearby, the furthest of which is just over a mile away.

“The academy has been over-subscribed for a number of years, due to an increase in numbers of children coming through the academy’s feeder or linked primary schools, more students living outside of catchment that have older siblings attending Quarrydale and parental choice.

“The academy has an annual published admission number of 180 and an independent appeal process is available to all parents whose children don’t secure a place through the normal admission criteria, which can be triggered by contacting Nottinghamshire County Council.”