Consultation on the proposal to change The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys’ school to a co-educational school

Closed 29 Jun 2020

Opened 1 Jun 2020

Results expected 13 Jul 2020

Feedback updated 15 Oct 2020

We asked

We asked for your views on proposals to change the character at The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys school to a co-educational school with effect from Septmeber 2021.

You said

A total of 638 responses were received in response to the consultation for The Forest School,  Horsham.

No responses were received after the closing date of 29 June 2020.  The responses showed 69% of respondents supported the proposals, 26% were against and 5% were uncertain.  Many of those in favour referred to the high quality pastoral care available at The Forest School also benefiting girls; a belief that boys will develop and improve better in co-educational schools and that co-educational provision better reflects modern society and is beneficial for both educational and social reasons.  Those against commented that there are already two other co-educational schools in Horsham and so a boys only school was needed, uncertainty about how it would work if Millais remained a single-sex girls’ school and a belief there was a place for both co-educational and single sex schools.

We did

In July 2020 the Cabinet Member for Education and Skills took a decision to approve the conversion of The Forest School, Horsham to become a co-educational school with effect from September 2021.  (decision reference ES5(20/21)).

In accordance with Department for Education guidelines, the County Council published statutory notices for the required four week period confirming the intention to make the prescribed alteration to change the character of The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys’ school to co-educational school from September 2021 entry.  Following the closure of this four week period there have been no representations received on the proposals that are deemed to provide new or significant information.  In this respect no further decision by the Cabinet Member for Education and Skills is required and the proposals will be implemented as described in the previous decision ES520/21.



The County Council is responsible for strategically organising schools to ensure that they work in the most sustainable and effective way to support pupil outcomes.  For school organisation across the County, the aim is to establish a model of robust and sustainable education for all schools and key stages. For school improvement, the aim is to effectively challenge and support schools in order to secure long-term financial sustainability.

This consultation is for pupils, parents/carers, staff,  pupils, governors, the local community and other interested parties.  Please read the 'Statutory Consultation -  Proposal to change The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys school to a co-educational school.

Why we are consulting

The Director of Education & Skills has agreed to consult on the proposed significant change of character to alter The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys’ school to a co-educational school from September 2021 entry.  At the same time  the Governing Body of St Andrew's CE Boys’ School, Worthing will consult on changing from a single sex boys’ school to a co-educational school from September 2021 entry. 

We welcome your views on the proposal relating to this school. The local authority will consider all the views put forward during the consultation period before a decision is taken on whether to implement the proposal.

Further details of the consultation and decision making process is outlined in the Consultation on the proposal to change The Forest School, Horsham from a single sex boys’ school to a co-educational school.

Our preferred method of response is for you to complete this online survey.  Alternatively, you can respond as follows:

1. Contact School Organisation & Development Team by emailing

2. Complete the response form at the end of the consultation document and return it via your local school or by post to:

The School Organisation Team (address), West Sussex County Council, Ground Floor, Northleigh, Tower Street, Chichester, West Sussex PO19 1RH

Please note: Due to the volume of responses we receive when consulting on school proposals, we will not be able to acknowledge written responses or enter into correspondence with interested parties during or after the consultation period. A list of frequently asked questions will be made available to view online and will be updated throughout the consultation period.

Accessibility statement

If you require this information in an alternative format, please contact us on 0330 22 23049 or via email at If you are deaf or hard of hearing and have an NGT texting app installed on your computer, laptop or smartphone, you can contact us on 18001 0330 22 23049 .

We are committed to making this website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.    Please view the West Sussex County Council Accessibility Statement, for further details.  Information about the accessibility of the Have Your Say Consultation Hub can be found by clicking on the 'Accessibility tab'   which can be found right at the bottom of this page.  

Where it exists, we will provide details of any project related content which is not fully accessible under a heading of 'Non-accessible content' below.   

Non-accessible content

The following documents are currently in PDF format and are not fully accessible to screen reader software:

  • Consultation Document The Forest School, Horsham PDF .

We plan to ensure all documents are complaint by September 2020. In the meantime, alternative formats may be requested using the contact details provided above.We are always looking to improve the accessibility of this website,If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please contact The School Organisation Team using the contact details provided above. 

What happens next

The consulting and decision making process is oulined below:

Following assessment of the outcome of the consultation the Cabinet Member for Education and Skills will be asked to consider whether to proceed in approving the significant change in character of The Forest School, Horsham to co-educational schools from September 2021.


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