In year transfer - reasons for refusal(11 Posts)
I've already read through a lot of the in year transfer threads which have been wonderful in helping me understand how all this works. Thank you to all the regular and knowledgeable posters.
I think I have got the basics now, but my LA's appeal process all seems a bit back to front. Can anyone help please?
So I have three DDs, two in KS2, one KS1. We recently moved within the LA. We are very close to the local high school. The only way we will get the children into that high school is if they in one of the feeder primary schools, which are also much closer to our new home.
We selected three of the feeder schools and applied for in year transfer. Same answer for each DD in each school: "a place cannot be offered as there are currently no vacancies within the relevant year group."
I've said we will appeal and got the forms and guidance notes which explain section 86 and tell me to direct my case to the two stage decision making process on appeals.
But I don't know the exact basis upon which the LA refused transfer in the first place, so how can I set out a reasoned appeal?
So I guess what I'm really asking is whether "there are currently no vacancies within the relevant year group" is an adequate reason for refusal or whether I should have been given a section 86 reason? Or is that sort of general wording pretty standard stuff?
Any help gratefully received. Then I can decide what I need to do about all this.
Transfer was refused because the school is full in the years you require. That's the only reason they need to give.
Your appeal for ks2 will depend on you making the case that the detriment to the school of admitting another child is smaller than the detriment to the child of not being admitted.
For ks1, you need to know how many children are in the classes ; if classes are all full with 30 children each , it becomes an infant class size appeal, which are very hard to win as 30 is the legal maximum and can only be exceeded in very limited circumstances.
Thanks Patricia. Yes, the guidance notes from the LA give a very clear explanation of the different test for ICS appeals. That's why I found it a bit odd that the reason for refusal didn't set out a s86 reason for refusal, so that the parent then knows if they are dealing with an ICS appeal or not.
But now I know that the general wording the LA have used is pretty standard, I can put the grounds of appeal together. I expect I will be told in due course that it is an ICS appeal for my youngest, but there's nothing more I can say to counter that anyway.
Section 86 essentially just says they have to take your preference into account, unless "would prejudice the provision of efficient education or the efficient use of resources” - which is usually taken to mean if the school classes are full. So there isn't a list of S86 reasons other than that!
They should be able to tell you now if the KS1 appeal is ICS.
Having agreed with PatriciaHolm that the LA simply has to say that the year group is full and they have reached the PAN, it is also the case that when it comes to appeal the admission authority has to come up with reasons over and above the fact that they have reached PAN to refuse admission. That is why before the appeal you will get the admission authorities case not to admit and it will talk about narrow corridors and small halls and insufficient classrooms for the pupils in the school etc.
Yes, that will be riveting reading I have no doubt
The system is wrong I think. One more child in a class can't really make much difference, but then one more, and then another.... It can't be easy to administer.
I expect that it will all come down to whether the tribunal sympathises enough with my family.
I assume the fact that the we have moved within the LA is an irrelevance. i.e. the DDs would be giving up places at a highly rated primary and then high school within the same LA, so the net effect across the LA's education provision would be zero?
You are right - the fact you've moved within the LA is an irrelevance. All that matters is the effect on the appeal school, not the net effect across the LA.
Thank you all. Interesting development. I just rang round the three schools asking just about Year 1.
School 1 says it has 5 places.
School 2 says it has 1 place.
School 3 says it has a limit of 28 on its Y1 classes, which are therefore full (56 pupils total)
So I have mixed feelings. I'm obviously pleased that our chances of getting our youngest transferred just rocketed. But I'm less than impressed that the LA sent us a letter specifically in respect of our youngest saying there were no vacancies at any of the schools. That was clearly not correct.
I can either proceed with the appeal and put all this in my grounds of appeal, or get on the phone with the LA and try to sort things out that way. Or possibly try the phone and if that fails reference it all in the appeal.
Get on the phone to the LA, tell them you have spoken to the school in question and it says it has a place free. Hopefully you can sort this out asap.
Are the schools you require Academies? In which case they may run their own lists for Yr1 and not the LA.
One is an academy. One isn't - the one with 5 spaces. One I'm not 100% certain without checking. But the LA answered in the negative about all three schools. So something went badly wrong.
I will phone the LA as you suggest. There are still my Y3 and Y5 to deal with, even if I get the Y1 sorted. Appeal may have to proceed for them, but will be all the stronger for youngest already being admitted presumably.
Having a sibling in the school should put them higher on the waiting list, though you would need to check the admissions criteria - not all schools give preferential treatment to siblings.
And yes on the face of it the LA have ballsed this up. They should have known the number on roll at the LA maintained schools, and if they didn't, found out. I think it's unlikely that 5 people left between them sending the letter to you and now...
Phoning should sort this out much quicker than an appeal, which could take several weeks.
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