In year admissions - will we find a place?

(4 Posts)
Magsisgoinghome Fri 07-Dec-12 14:23:18

We've been living overseas for almost 5 years now, planning to return towards the end of March 2013. We've been looking at various areas around London, and Bromley comes out tops in almost all aspects. We have to be close to London for DH's work (I work from home). We've previously lived in East Kent, but unless DH gets a firm job offer (highly unlikely) we won't be able to return unless we are willing to spend £6000 per year on train fare.

My DD is 7, turning 8 in March, so she'll be going into Year 3. I've been looking at a wide area, from Beckenham though to Brickly, and the majority of the state primaries look good to me. We'll be renting privately, so will have to go into short-term accommodation when we first arrive whilst we are looking for a flat to rent. I understand that my DD would not be offered a place before we have a tenancy agreement, so this will be priority, DH might even have to fly out a couple of weeks ahead of us to try and arrange a flat to rent.

I've got no idea how difficult it would be for us to get an in-year admission. I've downloaded the forms from the council's website, and I see that we can list 4 preferences. I also understand that all in-year admissions are handled by the LEA and not the schools. However, do you think it might be a good idea for me to contact a few schools before we leave? Maybe if I know beforehand which ones are completely oversubscribed, I'd know not to list them.
Also, is there a place where I can look at the actual catchment areas of each school - or would the estate agents be able to advise us? I'm scared of ending up choosing a home outside of any catchment areas.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated! I'm really stressed and worried about the whole process.

timenotmoney Mon 17-Dec-12 22:45:14

The catchment areas for all primaries can be found on the London Borough of Bromley website. Open the booklet on applying for a primary school place and turn to the "proximity" page. This shows the distances for the last 3 years for al schools.

Having said that, because you will be "in year" then none of this will be relevant. All of the schools are likely to be completely full and (I think this is how it works but best check with Bromley) you will be waiting on somebody leaving and then being the closest to the school to receive the offer.

The junior classes are allowed to take an additional 3 pupils at the start of year 3 and so if you were back by then you may be in a better position.

If not then I'd try to move very close to one of the largest good schools (Pickhurst?) as there is more chance of people moving on.

Then again you may just get lucky which is what you really need most in this process.

Oystershells Tue 18-Dec-12 23:02:06

Magsis If you are looking for somewhere to rent or buy in Bromley, I would highly recommend Sinclair Hammelton estate agents in Bromley. I have used them and they are brilliant. Everyone who works for them has done so for many years so are familiar with the borough for houses, schools, transport, parks etc . Their telephone number is 020 8464 5566 and www.

Magsisgoinghome Thu 20-Dec-12 13:51:56

Thank you time and oyster , very helpful advice smile

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