A most surreal day

Mar 6, 2015

Today I took the children to the London Aquarium. It turns out, that for someone waiting to hear the biggest piece of news in their life so far, the London Aquarium, several stories down and under a giant fish tank, was not the place to be.

So today, after re-dialling for an excruciating 45 minutes, Hugh, my partner and the project manager for our free school group, finally got through to me. He found me in the midst of several school parties, with our son hanging off my arm and our daughter hitting me over the head with a plastic beaker. The line cut in and out.

After repeating himself several times, I finally understood. We would ‘probably’ be approved. Probably? They couldn’t say ‘definitely’ until Monday.

And I wasn’t to tell anyone. Or react. Or give anything away in any fashion at all.

Thank goodness I was out with the kids in the dark and noise of the London Aquarium and not sat in the office.

On Monday morning, at 10am, Lord Nash and entourage will be coming to see us at Broadfields – our partner school – ‘for a chat’. And on Monday successful schools will be announced.

So, until then, we sit tight. Not saying anything to anyone. And wonder whether this is really happening.

(And wonder too that surely, he can’t be having a ‘chat’ with every approved school? And what sort of ‘chat’ involves the press coming too?)

But what I can do while we wait is to start drafting the blog that I hadn’t quite been able to bring myself to write, because I was so afraid of either saying something daft that messed things up, or tempting fate. The last year has been an amazing journey. For all those who have been involved in one way or another, I wanted to make a record of our achievement. For anyone thinking of setting out on the same road, speaking to people who had already opened schools gave us the inspiration to start, to keep going and an idea of what was involved, so I hope this blog will do the same for you. And for anyone who is just watching, wondering who these crazy people setting up a new school in Harrow are, over the next few months I will tell you our story.

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Feb 5, 2018

So, the news is out. Mariposa is over.

As we lick our wounds and work out what our lives look like now, I can finally write a blog post or two about the experience. Apologies for length – it has been a while!


Jul 1, 2017

Starting a new school is a long process, full of lots of hoops and reports and boring stuff that neither generates much fun or much news. We are often asked by parents for updates, as we haven’t posted much news lately. Invariably I reply with, ‘Well, we’re working on the planning process – having meetings with the ESFA (the newly-renamed Education and Skills Funding Agency) and Harrow Council and working on all the detailed plans for our curriculum and school policies and procedures’.


May 31, 2016
There are many things about our journey to starting Mariposa that have been frustrating, but none as much as the battle to announce our site. We want to be completely open and involve our community as much as possible with the new school. However, for this part, that is completely out of our hands.

Here is why…


Mar 11, 2016
We are back and things are moving fast! Our site is close to being announced, we have identified two new roles on our Steering Committee and we are advertising for our first Head Teacher.

Next page: Site


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