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Any hope?

(12 Posts)
Goldchilled7up Tue 30-Apr-13 08:17:37

My son is currently 6th on the waiting list for our first choice school. We're in London but the school is very popular and oversubscribed. The LA won't let me know if there has been any movement on the list until the 2nd. But we were informed that it could go up or down.

Is there any hope of getting a place by being 6th on the list of a very oversubscribed school? I believe that most people who get a place hold on to it.

nlondondad Tue 30-Apr-13 08:58:50

This is a difficult one to respond to.

First of all a waiting list is ranked (ordered) on the basis of the admission criteria for the school. Its made up of the unsuccessful applicants to the school, those who were unsuccessful in the first round, which means in practice those who lived too far away to get an offer up front. However anyone who was a late applicant in an area can (have to really) go on waiting lists; also anyone who has not been allocated a place for any of their preferences (or not allocated a place they have decided they want), will if they read the advice on Mumsnet (!) be putting themselves on the waiting list for any acceptable school..

So you can go down the ranking because someone who lives closer to the school adds themselves.

However, this does mean that children will often appear on lots of waiting lists. So what will cause you to move up is:-

1. Parent decides not to accept place at your first choice school. They may be in the process of moving out of the area, one of the couples gets that dream job offer somewhere too far away, or they take up a private option.

2. Child before you in the ranking gets an offer at a school acceptable to parents and therefore goes off all the waiting lists they are on.

So this means that, at the moment there needs to be at least one vacancy at your first choice school and the five on the waiting list ahead of you need to get places somewhere, not ness. at your favoured school.

So what are the chances?

This depends partly on how many forms of entry there are, as the bigger the intake, the smaller the percentage shift needed to get you in. But other than that just depends on the number who drop out and that will vary a lot from year to year. Also, and this is the nail biting thing, the school will not know for sure who is coming until a couple of days into the autumn term! Some parents will just not turn up. So you might get an offer at very much the last moment.

With a two form entry school from my experience being 6th is hit and miss; you do have a reasonable chance, which you would not, in my view have if you were say 15 on the list, but you dont have the very good chance of being say 2nd on the list.

I hope this long posting helps, I know it is really hard for you that no one can be more definite.

Goldchilled7up Tue 30-Apr-13 09:49:10

nlondondad your post is very helpful, thank you. The school has 2 reception classes of 30 children each. All this waiting process is very stressful, but I'm happy to take a last minute place if it arises.

I was told by a friend that I can keep my son in the nursery class until the winter term, as he goes to nursery at the school that we're on the waiting list. But I'm not sure if this is sensible, the chances of a child leaving during the term are probably very small?!

Goldchilled7up Tue 30-Apr-13 20:21:20

Any advise in regards to the last post please?

Pyrrah Wed 01-May-13 11:48:04

In London I would reckon being 6th is a pretty good place to be, especially in a 2 form entry! I would imagine you would be almost certain to get a place after September if you are prepared to move schools. Do you know what mobility is like in the area?

I'm currently 44th on the waiting list for my 1st choice and pretty happy with that. I'm 99.9% certain I won't get a place before September but after that the waiting list will move fast as there is high mobility in that school.

After 31st August you have to opt into waiting lists for schools - currently anyone who listed it higher than their allocated option will be on it. Plenty of parents are happy with any of their top 3 choices - others will also be wanting the place you are after.

Pyrrah Wed 01-May-13 11:48:52

Oh, forgot to say, my LA told me to ring weekly to check the lists. Tomorrow should be a good one as all rejections should be in and a reallocation will be made.

Goldchilled7up Thu 02-May-13 10:27:53

Thank you Pyrrah. I've just called admissions and he has moved to 5th, not much difference. I asked about the mobility in the school and apparently there isn't much.

Goldchilled7up Thu 09-May-13 16:24:55

If anyone is interested in an update and if you're still waiting for your first choice school. My son has just got an offer to our first choice. Initially we were 6th on the list. It is a very popular school with low mobility, so if you're still waiting there is hope smile

GreenEggsAndNaiceHam Thu 09-May-13 17:22:37

phew, I bet you are happy smile

NynaevesSister Thu 09-May-13 17:31:29


Goldchilled7up Thu 09-May-13 17:49:33

I am grin

jellysmum77 Thu 09-May-13 17:56:00

That's great smile

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