Bourne Grammar School offering 30 more places to Year 7 pupils from September

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BOURNE Grammar School is expanding to offer an extra 30 places to Year 7 pupils from September.

Lincolnshire County Council has granted permission for the school, in South Road, Bourne, to increase its yearly intake from 150 children to 180.

As from March 1, the extra places at the school will be offered to Year 6 children who are still in primary school.

Priority will go to those with siblings already at the school, which became an academy this month.

Headteacher Jonathan Maddox said: “It is wonderful that we will now be able to bring good news to a further 30 families and I very much look forward to welcoming the extra students here and to meeting their families. Bourne families have preference for places at present and they shall do in the future.

“First places go to siblings of those already in school and then other pupils are chosen on distance, with Bourne children having automatic preference.”

Every year Bourne Grammar is over-subscribed with children who pass its entrance exam.

Mr Maddox said: “While that is humbling and, of course, pleasing, it is always a great disappointment to know that so many will eventually be unable to attend due to our limited places.”

He added: “We are delighted to be able to offer these places and to have become an academy.

“It does seem that we are starting the year in a positive and confident frame of mind.”

The school has 979 pupils at present. Mr Maddox said the planned increase would make it equal in size to Queen Elizabeth’s High School in Gainsborough, the largest grammar school in Lincolnshire.

The school buildings can accommodate the extra pupils in September but would need to be extended in future.

Mr Maddox added: “We will also appoint additional staff where necessary as we know what staffing levels we will need each year. The changes will not affect class sizes.”

Although the school is an academy, it had to seek permission to expand because Lincolnshire County Council retains control of the number of places available at schools.

Academy status allows schools to adapt the national curriculum, set their own pay and conditions for staff, change the length of terms and school days and set their own admissions policies.