AIBU that it's a nightmare to apply for a school outside your current education authority?

(12 Posts)
CecilyP Wed 21-Nov-12 11:58:47

Yes, I'm aware there have to be rules and agree that would be completely unworkable, but surely there could be a kind of half-way/interim acceptance system? Or something? Otherwise it leaves genuine people like me on a cliff-edge.

But in a way, you are far less genuine than someone who has to move for work or family reasons. The only reason you are planning a move is so your DD can go to a particular school and if she doesn't get in, you would not move at all. Surely, anyone could do that - say they are going to move and then not bother if things don't go their way. It would cause absolute chaos.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Wed 21-Nov-12 10:37:26

Agree with prh - the only way an interim place could work is by not allocating a place to someone already living nearby.

prh47bridge Wed 21-Nov-12 10:30:13

If you can persuade Wandsworth to name the Surrey school on your daughter's statement she will be admitted using your current address. Once you move you will need to get a new statement from Surrey but, once it has been offered and accepted, the place would be yours even if Surrey decide a statement is not needed. Of course, if you are then unable to move to Surrey by start of term you would then have to take your daughter 35 miles to and from school each day.

Even without a statement, you can apply for a place at the Surrey school through Wandsworth (although the deadline for applications has already passed so it may be too late). Your chances of getting a place are limited but if the school is undersubscribed they will offer you a place.

I don't know how you think interim offers would work. If the school is full they cannot offer you a place, interim or otherwise. If it is not full you can apply from your current address through your current LA and you will be offered the place.

creamteas - If someone moves to the area and applies to the LA they must be offered a place somewhere. If there are no places available the LA's Fair Access Protocol kicks in and allows them to jump the waiting list, although that doesn't necessarily mean they will get a place at one of their preferred schools. In the case you quote I would imagine the main reason for the delay was that your friends moved in August when there would have been no-one at the schools for the LA to talk to.

tiggytape Wed 21-Nov-12 09:02:28

bonceaswell For the vast majority of parents, you are quite right. If you are moving area at this time you are a bit stuffed because you cannot apply to schools in your new area using your new address until you actually live there (and using your current address is no good as most London schools are oversubscribed after 2 miles let alone 20 or 200 so you won't get in).
Even if you are moving nextdoor to the new school you want, chances are you'll miss the deadline, not get a place and be allocated a place at a school with spare capacity (normally miles away or a poor school or both).
This makes moving very problematic and stressful.

But for a child with a statement you can use current address and, as long as the school you want is named on her statement, you will get a place.

creamteas Unfortunately not everybody living in the area and applying on time will get a place alloacted. Hundreds of children every year apply on time to their 6 closest schools and yet don't get an offer from any of them (it is perfectly possible to live too far from the schools closest to you to qualify for a place) so waiting lists are comprised of new people to an area, people who didn't get the place they liked best and people who despite living locally at the time of application got no place allocated at all.

Blu Wed 21-Nov-12 08:46:10

I understand the frustration for people who will be relying on distance for admission, but I don't see how it could be much different.

But your dd has a statement. Apply to the school from your current address as a statement holder and distance won't apply, surely?

TalkinPeace2 Tue 20-Nov-12 22:06:37

your DD has a statement - you jump to the top of any queue

bonceaswell Tue 20-Nov-12 20:27:25

To be honest, I don't have an objection to the 'must be living in the area'. Can you imagine what would happen if schools had to hold places for people who were intending to move give the length of time house moves could take? It would be completely unworkable.

Yes, I'm aware there have to be rules and agree that would be completely unworkable, but surely there could be a kind of half-way/interim acceptance system? Or something? Otherwise it leaves genuine people like me on a cliff-edge.

Books and everyone, she has got a new statement (which I have, off my own bat, copied into the surrey school). And yes, I have been pressed by Wandsworth to nominate my preferred (Wandsworth!) school, despite their awareness of the impending move, so slightly 'head in the sand' or as I prefer to view it, belts and braces, just in case everything goes tits up!
And re distance criteria, we're talking about 35 miles from Wandsworth to S W Surrey so I doubt whether we'd get anywhere near the top of the list! (if I understand you, Books, correctly!)

BooksandaCuppa Tue 20-Nov-12 19:51:37

And I thought that for ordinary applicants (non-statemented) children you can apply to wherever from wherever you live; it's just that the criteria such as distance will obviously be applied from your current home. But if you applied to a school with places they have to give you a place?

BooksandaCuppa Tue 20-Nov-12 19:48:09

Well if she's statemented you won't be going through the usual process at all. You won't even get a form. You will get a proposed amended statement in about Oct of yr 6 with a space for you to choose the school you want and they basically have til Feb to let you have the finished statement.

But I'm not sure how it works if you're asking your current authority to place your child in a different one even though you aim to be living there later. You must have a named person at your current authority who will explain the process for you; I suppose the new authority don't even have to honour need for the statement at all. But when you do get it (unless they disagree and you have to go to tribunal) then actually Feb to Sept is quite a long time for selling your house etc?

Get on the phone now - just realised you're talking about this academic year being yr 6. Why haven't you had the proposed new statement yet?

creamteas Tue 20-Nov-12 19:46:21

To be honest, I don't have an objection to the 'must be living in the area'. Can you imagine what would happen if schools had to hold places for people who were intending to move give the length of time house moves could take? It would be completely unworkable.

What I do think is odd is that after the move, children who literally have no school are treated the same as way as children who don't have their preferred school. This caught some friends of mine out when they return to the UK from the US in August and did not get any offers of school places till the end of Sept as they were put on the waiting lists with everyone else.

Vivalebeaver Tue 20-Nov-12 19:39:18

It's crap, I'd never want to move because of this.

I might be wrong but I thought that a statement didn't count for a late application of the school is oversubscribed. So people who applied in time would get priority even with no statement. But with a statement you'd get priority over others who applied after the deadline.

I couldn't move because of this, would be too stressful.

bonceaswell Tue 20-Nov-12 19:35:52

Am I missing something obvious, or is moving from one education authority to another a Catch 22 nightmare? My daughter will finish primary school in Wandsworth in summer 2013. I want to move to south west Surrey in time for her to start at a specific secondary school down there in Autumn 2013. I have spoken to everyone in both boroughs about the process for applying to a school to give me reasonable time to make all the major changes in my life, and the general consensus/law (!) seems to be that you can't apply for a school until you live in the area (which of course won't be till end of July, as she doesn't finish at her London primary till then). Which would give me 2 months, 9 months late to apply for her to start at that school in September 2013. Not much wriggle room frankly.
So that's not been thought-through has it.
So I've got to make the enormous leap of putting my Wandsworth house on the market, hoping it will sell, before then finding and buying a house in south west Surrey, before being able to make an application for my daughter to go to that new school. With no guarantee she'll get in there. And I don't want her to go anywhere else. If she couldn't go to that school, frankly, we'd want to stay in London.
She is statemented, which apparently gives her a virtual 'passport' to get into whichever school she wants, but still .... surely there should be some sort of official process that accommodates families that are moving into another area. Or AIBU?

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