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Can someone help explain primary admissions to me.

(11 Posts)
zippyswife Sun 29-Nov-15 16:20:49

Ds1 did not get his first choice school (local average school) but got his second choice (outstanding small catholic school). I was a bit miffed at the time as we wanted our local school but now love the catholic school is. However ds2 is due to start school in September. I'm really worried that he won't get into the same school as ds1 as the criteria is firstly baptised children in the parish then baptised children in surrounding parishes (category we fall into) then it goes to non Catholics.

I know last year we got given the school as our second choice even though other non-Catholic people who are local to the school didnt get it even when it was their first choice.

I guess what I'm asking is
If lots of Catholics in the area put it as their second choice would they be given it ahead of us. It's only a one form intake and I'm dreading the thought of ds2 not getting the same school. Aside from the fact that it's a fantastic school it would devastate the ds' and would be a logistical nightmare!!

Not sure if this makes any sense but wondered if anyone could advise!

NickNacks Sun 29-Nov-15 16:28:04

It's not relevant at all whereabouts you place it on your preference form. Everyone is rated against the admission criteria and you if you are eligible for more yah. One school, then that is when preferences are looked at and used to give you your one offer.

NickNacks Sun 29-Nov-15 16:28:27

*more than one school

zippyswife Sun 29-Nov-15 16:35:03

So if lots put it as their second choice and are in catchment they would get it over me?

Thanks for clarifying this. For some reason I can't get my head round it! I'm becoming a bit obsessed about this at the minute which silly as its out of my hands and there is really nothing I can do.

Similarly then. My local school (non-faith that ds1 didn't get last year) told me not to bother putting it as my second choice as last year they had 70 first choices for 30 places. Hypothetically if i put it as my second choice but I live closer than people who have put it as their first choice would I get it over them?

MrsHathaway Sun 29-Nov-15 16:52:13

Preference only matters to you - offers are made purely based on who fits the criteria best, and preferences are only taken into account if a child qualifies for more than one school.

So say you live next to school A and apply for C,B,A in that order. Lots of people in the village five miles apply for A,B,C. All the schools are oversubscribed so you don't qualify for those but you do for A, because you're next door. An entire village of people who really wanted A don't get in, but lots of them get the C places you really wanted.

The bit that's hard to get your head round is that you can't swap your A place for their C place.

There is lots of good advice available on MN but it comes down to (1) know the criteria (2) put your preferences in your genuine order of preference (3) use all your preference spaces but (4) make sure you put at least once on the list that you ought to get into if there is one.

NickNacks Sun 29-Nov-15 16:52:35

Schools are not told where you have placed them so it was pointless in them saying that. School staff don't always understand admissions themselves because it's not in their remit to deal with.

Yes if people rank in a higher category then you then they will be offered before you, do they have a siblings criteria? Don't forget those people might also qualify for their first choice school and so they will be given that over the school that you want.

MrsHathaway Sun 29-Nov-15 16:53:41

Cross posted. Yes, to your last question.

70 first choice for 30 places is only an indication of popularity, nothing else. If you live next door to it you'll go ahead of all of them even if you put it last choice.

zippyswife Sun 29-Nov-15 17:01:05

Thanks for the explanations. It's much clearer to me now. It was the headteacher that explained the process (incorrectly) to me and told me not to bother putting it as a second choice as I wouldn't get it! hmm

eddiemairswife Sun 29-Nov-15 17:09:33

I would tell Admissions what the head has told you, and they can get in touch with him/her and put them straight. It really annoys me when parents come to Appeals and have been misinformed by school staff.

LIZS Sun 29-Nov-15 17:18:27

If you want the same school as ds1 you need to list it first. Otherwise if you did qualify for the non-Catholic school as well as there the place will be allocated there as LA would assume it was your preference. If you don't get allocated the Catholic one you may still get the other one.

zippyswife Sun 29-Nov-15 18:12:56

Thanks for the advice and explanation. Much appreciated.

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