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What happens when you apply to swap schools?

(13 Posts)
kitbit Thu 07-Jul-11 13:39:56

we came back to the UK 2 years ago and because of the timing we missed all the deadlines to apply for school places for Reception. We ended up putting ds in a small private school just to be sure of getting aplace somewhere as we didn't have an address in the uk yet and were going to be starting work soon after arriving. We left him there till now as we thought it would be too unsettling soon after moving countries to change schools again and besides there were no places nearby.

So...2 years on we want him to go to a local school and there is one that we particularly like (isn't there always!) that would perfectly suit ds (strong on languages, he's losing his 2nd language at the moment as current school can't support it and using it at home isn't enough sad)

The school says it has no places but the LEA says we can apply then appeal. He'll be leaving his current school at xmas (just can't afford it) so will that help his case? Or will it force us to accept a place at an alternative school? The alternative is miles away and has a really bad reputation <nervous>

Just don't know what to expect, has anyone appealed and won?

God what an epic thanks for reading this far!

IndigoBell Thu 07-Jul-11 14:21:15

You are unlikely to get into a school that has no places in his year group.

You can get into any school that has places in his year group.

Your best bet is to ring the LEA and ask which schools have places in his year group, and then decide how to proceed.

You can appeal, and the LEA is obligated to tell you you can appeal, but you are unlikely to win.

PatriciaHolm Thu 07-Jul-11 17:43:31

Which year group will he be going into? Yr2? If so, and the school is full, then I believe it will an Infant Class Size appeal (e.g the class is full up to it's maximum size). Winning an ICS appeal is hard, and essentially comes down to have the LEA made a mistake (as in contrary to the law or the admissions code) or acted irrationally in not admitting him; which as far as I can see from what you have written they have not.

Him leaving his private school makes no difference to the appeal. The LEA have offered you a place; the fact you don't want it isn't relevant. If you don't accept that offer, they aren't under any obligation to find you another you like better.

If he would be going into Y3 then things are different and ICS no longer applies, and you need to prove that he would suffer more than the school would by admitting another pupil.
More experts will be along shortly I expect!

kitbit Thu 07-Jul-11 18:26:36

Thanks very much for the info, yes he'll be going into year 2. We live in a very densely populated area unfortunately, with few comings and goings sad

prh47bridge Thu 07-Jul-11 20:03:03

It is not necessarily the case that a Y2 appeal would be infant class size. It depends on the number of children in each class. If they run with classes of less than 30 it would not be infant class size. However, most schools do operate classes of 30 and it is almost impossible to win an infant class size appeal for an in year application as mistakes are very unlikely.

HooverTheHamaBeads Thu 07-Jul-11 20:19:46

I'd apply as an in-year transfer now (for September) in take and see how you get on. If you don't get a place at your preferred school you can ask to stay on the waiting list and hope for some movement.

newgirl Thu 07-Jul-11 20:31:12

If a place comes up at the school it will go to no 1 on list which will be the child who lives nearest. Put your name on waiting list and see where you are

Changebagsandgladrags Thu 07-Jul-11 20:49:50

I agree, go on the waiting list.

We also live in an area of little movement, but there is always some movement.

kitbit Thu 07-Jul-11 21:41:00

Thanks everyone, really good advice. Knew I could rely on you lot to know!
I'll apply anyway and see where we end up. Sadly we live right at the opposite edge of the catchment area so that won't help. The catchment is illogically wonky on the map.

Will it help to go and see the school and ask the head for their advice? If they can endorse our hopes of sending him there because it offers things like support for his 2nd language, would that help? <clutches at straws>

PatriciaHolm Thu 07-Jul-11 22:23:24

The Head can't support an appeal, sorry. They have no say in the process and cannot be partisan.

GiddyPickle Thu 07-Jul-11 23:01:40

No - the Head has no influence on these things.
If Year 2 is full even the LEA has little discretion - 30 per class (per qualified teacher that is) is the legal maximum for Year 2 children and an appeal will only win if they've made some mistake that leads to you not getting a place that you would definitely be entitled to (eg if they use the wrong address but you are actually in catchment)

However in Year 3 and beyond there is no legal restriction and appeals for a Year 3 place (if you fail this year and try again next year) are based on things like how the school suits your son's needs. These things aren't taken into account for Year 2 appeals but they are for Year 3 and beyond making the appeals easier to win.

kitbit Thu 07-Jul-11 23:24:03

Interesting about yr 3. Wonder why that suddenly changes.

GiddyPickle Fri 08-Jul-11 08:02:48

It suddenly changes because there is a law which states that the maximum class size for younger children is limited to 30 pupils but for Year 3 and above no such law exists about numbers.

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