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Conflict of high school place

(5 Posts)
BertyMU Mon 19-Oct-15 13:56:33


I’m interested in peoples view\advice on my current situation which is causing a lot of pain and stress…….

I have joint custody/residency (shared 50/50) of my daughter. I split from my daughter’s mother 8 years ago and married my current wife who I now have 2 children with. My daughter is due to go to high school next year and I want her to continue her education in the area where she has attended primary school and where her friends are going.
Unfortunately my daughters mother want her to go to school near her house which whilst it is not the other side of the world it is impossible for us to get her to and from school on the days she is at home with us (half the week). My daughter wants to continue her education where she is now (i.e. move from the primary to the high school area with her friends).
There is a previous court order in place that states "when deciding high school it must be done jointly with strong consideration to what the child wants." Unfortunately her mother is not considering this and made an application elsewhere without considering me or my daughter. Because of that (and the fact she won’t communicate with me or my Therefore I have had to go down the mediation route. I’m still waiting to see if she will join me in mediation but sadly I don’t think she will which will leave me with no option but to make an application to the court for them to decide for us.

I’m hopeful that given the fact my daughter already goes to a school in the area, her friends are going and it is where she wants to go that the court deciding (should it come to that) should have a fairly easy decision.

The only thing I can think of is that the schools my ex wants are slightly better (as per the ofsted report).

Has anybody else have any experience of a similar matter and

titchy Mon 19-Oct-15 14:13:12

You have 11 days left to get the application in, otherwise you'll be allocated whatever school is left over after all the on-time applications have been considered, so you've really left it far too late to debate now....

You should also recognize that you don't actually get a choice - you get a chance to express a preference. So even if you could get an emergency court hearing this week, and a judge to agree with you, if you don't meet the admissions criteria for your preferred school you won't get a place. Usually the criteria will include proximity of the child's main weekday address to the chosen school, so is that your house or her mother's? And how likely is it that she could actually get a place at either school from her weekday address (and if she spends exactly 50% of her Sunday to Thursday nights with each of you, you will need to find out how the LEA determines which address to use).

BertyMU Mon 19-Oct-15 14:32:48

Hi, sorry I should have explained better perhaps - I’m aware of the application deadlines and given the conflict there is an application from me to one LA and one to another LA from her mother. I’m aware only one can go ahead and as her mum claims the CB it will be hers. However, there is a court order and an application to the court will probably need to be made to determine which one is pursued as her mother’s goes against a previous court order and more importantly what my daughter wants. I’m also aware that it’s only an application and the LA decides but it is worth noting she us guaranteed a place at the school near our house (the one she wants to go to) as it is a feeder school.

I was more interested in anyone’s experience of a similar conflict and the outcome (as well as hearing people’s views.

Sorry I didn’t give all the info – complex issue.

Thanks for the info though.

titchy Mon 19-Oct-15 14:59:27

I can't comment any further, except to say I wouldn't let a 10 year old make a decision on which school is better for them to attend. That's a decision for adults, so personally, I wouldn't regard your child's wants as remotely important.

I'd also add that the one thing you can almost guarantee is that by Christmas of year 7 she will NOT be friends with anyone she was at primary school with even if she does go to secondary with her current friends, so that is NOT a sound basis upon which to make a decision.

Other than OFSTED (which is more favourable in the other school....) what reasons are there for wanting your school? Presumably the travel issue works both ways?

BertyMU Mon 19-Oct-15 15:09:12

Thanks for your viewpoint.

The decision should be made jointly which it currently isn't hence the problem. Also I have no issues in letting my 10 year old have a voice and be heard. Why shouldn't she have a say? That isn't to say she'll get what she wants but she's clever and intelligent enough to have her voice at least considered and not overlooked. I want her to be happy and a good social circle has to be key to that. She has many friends and have no doubt she'll make new ones too. High school can be difficult at the best of time without starting in a new area.

I have to say it's quite sad you think that way about friendships. I've been best mates with my friend throughout primary and secondary (30 years). He was best man at my wedding and my daughters life guardian so I'm a little stunned by your viewpoint but thanks for your post - it's good to get people's views.

Best regards.

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