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Junior School Appeals

(9 Posts)
Pebbles27 Tue 09-Apr-13 15:51:47

Hi, we moved to a new area just over a year now, and applied for primary school places for both of our sons. We were able to get a space for our youngest son who started in year R ,however we did not get a space for our eldest son for an in year admission to year 2. We placed on the waiting and list for year two and had no luck. As the school is infant and junior school, we have to apply for a space in the junior school year 3 and just found out that he was not given a space. We live approximately four minute WALK form the school and he has a sibling now at the school. We cannot understand why we again not given a space, and we just wanted to know if anyone has been in a similiar situation and can offer us any advice as we are going for an appeal.

admission Tue 09-Apr-13 16:24:30

I suspect the answer may well be on the actual admission criteria for the junior school. It could well be that they give priority to pupils in the partner infant school. So if the infant class 30 in it and the junior class has 30, then all the pupils in the infant school will get a place at the school, no matter how close you live to the junior school.
Another alternative is whether or not the application was deemed to be on time. However the letter informing you that you have not been offered a place should have given you information about why you did not get allocated a place.
If you PM with the name of the infant and junior schools and the LA I will look up the admission criteria and see what the situation is.

tiggytape Tue 09-Apr-13 16:27:30

The first thing you need to do if find out if this is a mistake:

- Look at the admission criteria (LA boklet or school website) - Does having a sibling in the Infant School give priority for admission into the Junior School

- If there ^is a sibling link, do they know he has a sibling in Infant School? Did you say so on the form? If so, you need to ring admissions and check they haven't accidentally ignored this information

- What is the last distance offered to a child in DS's category i.e. sibling link child. It seems unlikely a child a few metres away with a siblign woudln't get a place but if for example there are 38 children with siblings applying for 30 places then there will be some chidlren with siblings who won't get in. What you've said doesn't mean they've made a mistake but it dies mean you need to check the above with admissions ASAP

tiggytape Tue 09-Apr-13 16:31:50

The next step:
- If they have made a mistake that has deprived you of a place eg ignored sibling priority assuming the admission criteria says it applies in this case, then you should be offered a place with no appeal. Note the mistake must be one that directly cost you a place not just a minor error.

Not all LAs will do this though and will insist on appeal. If the LA made a mistake which directly cost you a place, you must prove that and then you would win (unless they've made dozens of similar mistakes in which case they'd have to sort something out)

- Worst case scenario - there is no mistake and you've been genuinely beaten to a place, yes you can appeal. A Year 3 Appeal has more chance of winning than an appeal for younger children because class size laws cease to exist in Year 3.

You would focus on why the school you want meets your child's needs and interests. Childcare and transport arrangements do not win appeals (unless they are linked to a medical issue) - it has to be an appeal showing why only this school suits your child and why the harm for them not attending is greater than the harm the school suffers by taking one more pupil.

tiggytape Tue 09-Apr-13 16:35:10

sorry x posts with admission
And I suspect admission is correct. If children in the Infants get priority above siblings for the Junior School, then your DS would be placed after all of those children. If there are the same number of places in Year 2 as Year 3 and Year 2 is full, they'd be no space left for anyone not in the current Year 2 to get into the Juniors.

If this is the case - you can still appeal though.

Pebbles27 Tue 09-Apr-13 17:24:35

Thanks Guys, Really helpfull advice. We were told by the head Teacher that students in y2 are given priority to move to junior school y3. So I think our only option is to appeal, he is currently attending a school 30mins drive away, so he is currently spending all week at his granparents. So we need to get him in the same school as his brother . As this is affecting him socially and he feels like his not part of the family. We also struggling to get him into activities out of school because after leaving work , we find it difficult managing time to get him to activities and we can't rely on his grandparents as they have other commitments. So like I said earlier we will have to appeal

tiggytape Tue 09-Apr-13 18:03:56

Pebbles - in that case appealing will be your only chance (unless there is a waiting list in which case make sure you're on it. It is a long shot but people do move out of area sometimes and some go private for Year 3 so not all the current Year 2's may take up their offer).

I appreciate the travel aspect is a pain but don't dwell on it too much - only the aspects of it that negatively affect your son's education and ability to fit in with local friends, forge community links and any reasons he and his brother would benefit from being in the same school.
You are appealing for a place at the school not against a 30 minute drive so you need to look at the school you want and state why it meets your son's interests and abilities eg your son plays a violin and only this school has an orchestra or your son has a specific need that this school can meet.

admission Tue 09-Apr-13 20:18:05

Make sure with the admission office that you are on the waiting list and also what position you are on the waiting list. If you are high up on the list then this probably correct that you dd not get a place but if you are way down the waiting list then you need to find out more. If you have a sibling already in the school and live near the school then I would expect you to be very close to the top of the waiting list.
You then need to appeal and as tiggy tape says you need to be concentrating on reasons why this school. Obviously first on the list is that you live close by and have a sibling at the school but this is not actually a strong reason for admission. Much stronger is that current school is 30 minutes away, that they therefore are having to live with grandparents and he is being affected socially by not having any interaction during the week with sibling,friends and parents. Also need to major on what the local school can offer that he currently cannot access in the way of clubs etc.

teacherwith2kids Tue 09-Apr-13 20:28:47

Could it be that it is one of those schools where the sibling link works 'down' the age range but not 'up' - so the fact that the sibling in the desired school is younger than the child needing admittance may mean that no sibling priority is given?

Also a sibling in the infants may give no priority for admission to the junior section, whereas an older sibling already in the junior section would IYSWIM?

So your placement on the waiting list would dependent on distance only, with [after looked after children and children with statements)] children who had been in the attached infant school, followed by those not in the infant school but with siblings in the junior, then all others (including you) in order of distance?

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