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Catholic School Not In It's Own Parish

(10 Posts)
SomedayMyPrinceWillCome Fri 13-Nov-15 12:16:06

Just back from visiting a school which we are considering for my son to go to next year (standard reception entry), it is a catholic school and we are Catholic.
The school gives priority to children living in the parish of St X, however the school itself is in a different parish. Weird huh?
Sorry, no real question here but just seems strange

MrsLeighHalfpenny Fri 13-Nov-15 12:27:02

Yes, weird. Did you ask them why?

I suspect the school used to be in the parish it serves, but either the parish boundaries have changed, or the school has moved to new buildings.

VocationalGoat Fri 13-Nov-15 12:30:59

All you can do is get a reference from the priest at the church you've been attending Mass at for the past few years. That's the priest who knows your child and that's what matters.

HammerToFall Fri 13-Nov-15 12:34:27

They shouldn't turn baptised Catholic children down. Mine go to a catholic school at the other side of the city. There are six other schools and parishes closer and nobody batted an eyelid.

Fink Fri 13-Nov-15 12:36:21

Probably just a historical accident. E.g. parish boundaries changed when a new parish was created in the area/ it's just over the boundary and there was no land available on the other side etc.

From working in the Church I have realised that most people don't know what parish they live in anyway, they just assume it's the one where the church is closest to their home. Or in London they assume that it's a complete fit with the postcode.

DD's old school was a Catholic school serving 3 parishes and was situated right on the furthest edge of the third one. Not as 'weird' but still a bit inconvenient.

SomedayMyPrinceWillCome Fri 13-Nov-15 12:39:22

The school is in a very built up area & was opened 50 yrs ago - they said that this was the only land available when it was built.
It is now very over subscribed - 140 applications for 30 placed

SomedayMyPrinceWillCome Fri 13-Nov-15 12:39:56

Inconvenient - thank you. A much better word than weird

Fink Fri 13-Nov-15 12:40:11

Hammer, it depends on how over-subscribed there are. If there are places free then they will give them to any baptised Catholic child regardless of where they live and whether or not they're being raised Catholic (this was the case when I worked in the north east of England). But in more heavily populated areas, they will often have many times more baptised Catholic applicants than places and distance from home is one of the usual criteria to jusge between them. A good proportion of the Catholic children in our parish didn't get a place in a Catholic school even though they applied, because the school was full of baptised Catholics who lived closer.

TeenAndTween Fri 13-Nov-15 13:25:19

It is now very over subscribed - 140 applications for 30 placed

That might not be as bad as it sounds.
How many schools do you get to list on your form?
Because wherever someone places the school on the form they may/will be counted as an applicant. (I think)

So broadly speaking, 500 children and 500 school places, but 3 spaces on the form leads to 1500 applications, so all schools could have 3x the number of applicants but yet miraculously everyone could get their first choice.

What you need to check is which category you are in, and the category & distance of the last placed applicant over the last few years. That will give you a better idea of how likely it is you'll get a place.

SomedayMyPrinceWillCome Fri 13-Nov-15 14:37:29

Thank you
Having seen the school I'm not sure I'd want DS to go there. It is OFSTED "outstanding" &'all the parents I've spoken to love it. But everyone agrees it is a very academic school &'the reception classroom had chairs & tables set out like every other year group with very little space to play. I've seen mother primaries that offer Forest School & a large play area with a home corner, shop setup etc

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