Did your adopted DC get priority admission at an oversubscribed primary school - Any problems?

(33 Posts)
RedPT Mon 11-Nov-13 00:03:59

Hi, looking at primary schools for adopted dd and the school that I think would be best for her is a small oversubscribed church school. Admissions criteria are 1 looked after or adopted children, 2 siblings, 3 attendance at specified local churches, 4 Distance (but all places are always taken before 4). We would get in on 1 but not the the other criteria. Has anybody been in this postion? Did other parents resent your dcs admission, perhaps thinking you had 'taken' a siblings or church attendees place?

Idespair Fri 15-Nov-13 18:24:52

Take the place, it is your dd's right. If you have any nonsense from other parents I'd inform the head teacher and let the school handle it.

Wolfiefan Fri 15-Nov-13 18:09:28

My DC goes to a similar school. Hoping DD will get in next year. If your DD got a place instead of mine I wouldn't think twice. It is the procedure. The rules are there for a reason. Do the best thing for your child and good luck.

Devora Fri 15-Nov-13 18:06:33

I think there are so many variables here, so many people's minds and motivations you cannot know or control, that it's almost not worth thinking about.

People might be curious about it. They might not. They might resent you for it. They might not. If they're worth anything at all, they will have no problem with it whatsoever. I can't believe that the parents in my child's class (in an oversubscribed school) would gossip about this. But that doesn't mean it can't happen.

But I think that anticipating people behaving badly is probably NOT the way to go in this case. You will drive yourself crazy. Personally, I am open about everything - about being an adopter, about being a lesbian, about being in an interracial family - and have had amazingly few problems.

TeenAndTween Fri 15-Nov-13 12:27:18

The other way to approach this, is to be happy to be open that your DD is adopted. If people are aware of this, it will stop any mutterings as it will be clear which criteria you qualify under.

I am not aware of either of my DD's having had any negative reaction to people knowing they are adopted. They have had questions, and we have given them the tools to answer, but not negativity. It will also help you to be open and friendly with other parents if you do not feel you are holding something back / lying to them.

We don't shout it from the rooftops, but mention if revelant. However we also don't give details of reasons why; if asked I give general reasons why children need to be adopted.

Arohaitis Thu 14-Nov-13 00:38:23

Glen was it on appeal?

you could say he/she did since when the first person leaves presumably the first on list wont get in whereas they would have done previously.

Where I am some schools don't have enough sibling places so yes if you suddenly pop up and take a place the parents of that child will care, and they will tell their friends, and the people in year Reception who have an eldest starting will get worried that the same thing will happen to them but if you are in a land of school places a plenty then they will maybe care less.

Hence all my comments abut how oversubscribed it is and who misses out, although again where I am it is RC schools that are usually the most fought over

Arohaitis Thu 14-Nov-13 00:32:30

my LA publishes admissions details each year in the application booklet, I hope if you phone the LA office they will give you the figures you need for last year which may help you to work some of it out

failing that you could maybe ask the head to see what she says (although answers might need to be taken with a huge pinch of salt)

Glenshee Thu 14-Nov-13 00:30:16

You are absolutely overthinking it. People who already got into the school no longer care about admissions process.

You are not bending the rules or manipulating anything in any way, so how could it be your fault that you get a place?

In our school (also oversubscribed) a looked-after child was accepted even though the class was full, and an extra teacher assistant was appointed for the academic year for this very slightly larger-than-normal class. The teacher assistant wasn't a 1-on-1 help for the child in question (he didn't need it), but was brought in purely because of the size of the class. So all in all everyone benefited from the situation, and the child in care certainly didn't take anybody else's place!

RedPT Thu 14-Nov-13 00:27:08

hmm it's one form entry (compared to nearest school which is 4!), I don't know how oversubscribed it is, but I'll find out.

Arohaitis Thu 14-Nov-13 00:20:27

Oh do all siblings get a place? would it make a difference if it was small village Parish school rather than inner city? (probably so another thing to consider)
(again not expecting an answer)

Arohaitis Thu 14-Nov-13 00:17:28

Then I really think it depends on the school, how much further would you be than everyone else? when you say Churches is it one main Church then they take a few that have no link school or is it a whole bundle of combined parishes and no one knows/cares how often people go? or is it 1 Church and everyone has been going there since the year dot and the others are just on the list because they have to be? Is people knowing re adoption a deal breaker or is it that you are just worried the other parents will ostracise you? Is it more than 1 form entry?
How oversubscribed do 3 or 4 eligible children not get a place or does anyone who wants one get one in practice?

Not expecting answers to all of this BTW just might help you work it out

RedPT Thu 14-Nov-13 00:11:19

Arohaitis it's C of E. (The catholic schools here have looked after and baptised as the first criteria). I'm fine with the christian teachings of the school. But I am concerned about bad reactions from other parents.

Arohaitis Wed 13-Nov-13 23:07:08

For all the schools I have looked at tiny numbers get in on a statement the info is in the public domain, even for 3 or 4 form entry school (primary) the number is often 0 (and these were some of the most popular, catchment area 400m type schools)
That's assuming I have read the figures correctly TBH I did find it hard to believe, sometimes from my late night mumsnetting you feel like half the school population has s statement!!

duchesse Wed 13-Nov-13 23:05:21

It makes perfect sense to me to afford the best possible education to children who haven't had the best start in life. People who think otherwise maybe don't understand how crucial the first 3 years are in forming personality. Many LAC have enormous amounts to make up, and they should certainly be placed in the most appropriate possible school for them. Anybody who thinks or says otherwise is a fool and their views not worthy of any consideration.

Arohaitis Wed 13-Nov-13 23:03:32

Depending on the school people would certainly know

I think it might depend on how over subscribed it is TBH at some schools I can think of you would stand out like a sore thumb which might not be what you want. I know schools where committed believers who have been attending Church since conception (of parents not child) and live within 400/500m don't get places, in those circs you have to remember that everyone knows everyone and will have done for years and people just love to discuss everyone's business TBH.
eg one round here has a 'register' you need to sign so they know just exactly how often you attend
You also dont say whether it is RC or CofE which in my experience makes a difference to the 'intensity' of admissions.

You also need to consider that in these schools they are very heavily and regularly integrated into the life of the Church and how you will handle that with your dcs. Will you opt them out of all the religious stuff? How much are you looking to participate in it all?

there are RC schools that (when I last looked a couple of years ago might be different now) had things like being Baptised within 6 weeks of birth, and worshipping in that Parish for >2 years before application as admission requirements, I suspect they were not legal but the schools seemed to be full of people who fitted those requirements (the disclaimer being that I have no idea when MPs children were Baptised!)

My dcd don't go to these schools so this is just my experience from outside as it were

Lilka I'm not sure your comment is so true where I am. I suspect those children waiting for adoption either are of a faith that wouldn't really want to attend some of the highly intense and successful Church schools round here or are of that Faith so would go to the top of the list, would be interesting to see the stats though (are there any?)

Although I do agree schools go to all sorts of effort to keep people out or throw them out.

LittleSiouxieSue Wed 13-Nov-13 22:52:40

Meant to say "make sure"....

LittleSiouxieSue Wed 13-Nov-13 22:49:05

You are quite right to apply and if you are the top category, so be it. You may find there are other children in the same category and some parents will have their noses put out of joint, but the school must follow it's stated policy. Some schools will also prioritise SEN children so popular schools can have quite a large intake before people living locally get anywhere near the school and, as a result, schools like this have a catchment area the size of a beer mat! Remember though that it will be Churchy so name sure you will be happy and that your DD will too.

2468Motorway Wed 13-Nov-13 22:36:16

You are playing fair and doing what you believe to be the best option for your daughter.

Most likely no one will know unless you choose to tell them. Primary admissions are a bit of a black box to most parents.

Devora Wed 13-Nov-13 22:24:05

Have there really been threads of MN where posters criticised giving priority to adopted children? angry

cornish, that headmaster is a twat, isn't he? Position on the waiting list depends on priority criteria, not how long you've been waiting, so you can get (as we've had in my dd's class) somebody moving here from another country and literally starting at an oversubscribed school the next day, because they've moved in next to the school.

duchesse, no I don't think it varies between LAs. The rules were changed recently to extend the priority given to LAC to children who have been in care. I'm not sure how it applies to different types of school, though - anyone know if this applies equally to free schools, academies, faith schools etc?

duchesse Wed 13-Nov-13 19:40:32

Our friends' adopted four did (a very over-subscribed school), but it was before they had gone through the formal adoption in front of the court. My friend seemed to think that in this respect they would be given priority as having once been in care even post-adoption. I don't know if this varies from LA to LA.

cornishcreamtea Wed 13-Nov-13 19:31:02

I have been very confused about this as have been trying to find out information for a friend of mine who has fostered a child recently. She has done a lot of research but has been told by the headteacher of the school she has chosen that he would not let a fostered child jump the queue as he would be in trouble from parents who have been waiting on the list!

However the admissions department at the local authority have told her that the little one CAN go to the top of the list but will still have to wait until a space comes up. I always thought that the child had to be given a place even if it caused the class to be oversubscribed.
Can anybody clear this up for me please?

scarlet5tyger Wed 13-Nov-13 18:21:39

The best school in my area has the same criteria as yours. As long as you're applying for next school year, or there are places available, then no-one would know and your child would go straight to the top of the admissions list.

If you were applying once places have already been allocated though I don't think it's so straightforward. I'm not sure the school would go over their allocated number of children, or kick one out who'd already got a place!

Theironfistofarkus Mon 11-Nov-13 06:27:28

Half the parents will be pretending to be religious and will.have moved close to the school to improve their chances. Seems to me that your Dc is more entitled to a place than they are (and that the school agrees as set out in selection criteria). I say this as someone who has flirted with both the pray or pay and the moving strategies.

flossymuldoon Mon 11-Nov-13 06:12:31

In my LEA the rule has only changed for this year so when I looked at the online application process the online form hasn't changed to include adopted. The paper forum has changed though apparently so I'll be waiting for that to arrive in the next couple of weeks.

I won't be telling anyone though so other parents won't know he was 1st on the list or last.

RudolphLovesoftplay Mon 11-Nov-13 06:06:56

We got our DS's in mid-year to a oversubscribed (massive waiting list) school after we moved house. They were priority 1 so went to the top of the list. We only had to wait a week. Nobody has ever questioned us as to how they got in, same as it has never occurred to me to question how anybody else's children got in.

If anybody does ask, you could always shrug your shoulders and vaguely say "luck I guess" to them.

If you think it's the best school for your DC then apply and take the place, they are just as entitled to it as anyone else who meets the criteria.

RedPT Mon 11-Nov-13 00:34:05

Lilka, yes I think that's the attitude I should try to adopt.

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