Home schooling -who has to know?(6 Posts)
Hello, I'm planning on returning to UK in November with youngest child to live permanently after living overseas. Child is British. Once we're over we'll apply for him to go to local school in Sep 2012.
Older child will come over in Jan 2012 as I want him to finish school over here first. When he arrives in UK I don't want to send him to local school in case younger child doesn't get in.
My plan- and tell me if I'm being stupid- is to wait until April to see if Reception child gets in for Sep 2012. If he does then I'll apply for older son and see if there's a slot for him available. I'm also figuring that he'd be a higher priority because his younger sibling would be attending the school the following September.
In the meantime (Jan-April/May) I'll home school my oldest child. I'm a teacher anyway so it's not such a big deal.
My concern is that the oldest child will have no record anywhere in UK. He won't have been to preschool there, he won't have been to school there. Can I just pitch up to LEA in April and say- here's a child you don't know about, if there's a place available at local school, can he have it? Won't they want to know what he's been doing from Jan-May? If you home school do you have to let anyone know?
Am I mad or does this all seem fairly logical in terms of my plans for applications.
But if your oldest child is at school, than your younger child will get sibling priority and so will have a much greater chance of getting in.
As Indigo says, if you get the older one into a school in Jan, then your younger one will be higher up the priority list for a place in Reception. So if your longterm aim is to have them both in school, you'd probably have a higher chance of success doing it that way round.
But if you want to go the home education route, you don't have to inform anyone - you only legally have to inform people if you are deregistering a child from a state school to start HE. So you can indeed just contact the LEA at the time when you want to make an application for a school place for him, and tell them you've been HEing since he arrived in the country.
Getting your younger son into a school will not necessarily give your older son priority. Some schools/local authorities only give sibling priority when there is an older child at the school.
If your preferred school gives sibling priority, getting your older child in to the school will give your younger child a better chance of getting in to Reception. And yes, you can just pithc up in January (or April) and ask for a place at a school. If there is a place avaialble at your preferred school they have to give it to him.
So I agree with the other posters. You need to get apply for a place for your older child as soon as possible. You need him to have a place before 15th January (the closing date for primary school applications) so that you can get sibling priority for your younger son. Talk to your local authority as they may not want to offer a place to your older child more than a few weeks before he will start school so you need to understand the rules they use and work out a timetable that gives you the best chance of achieving what you want.
You have nothing to lose to apply for a place for your eldest at your preferred school when you arrive in Jan. If he doesn't get a place, you can put him on the waiting list and then HE him, since you are prepared to do that anyway. Then once your youngest has a place (assuming he gets one thanks to proximity), your eldest may (or may not, depending on the LA, as described above) move up the waiting list due to sibling priority (mine did). Either way, you don't lose out by applying sooner rather than later.
Ah I see that I had it back to front. Thanks so much for all of your advice: I really appreciate it.
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