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Removing sibling criteria for school places?

(22 Posts)
Itscurtainsforyou Wed 08-Feb-17 20:54:58

Hi - I've just heard that schools/education authorities are removing the sibling criteria from school places allocation soon.

Does anyone have any information on this?

meditrina Wed 08-Feb-17 21:01:35

You'll need to check with the relevant admissions authority (LA or school item self if academy or VA), because some are making changes. And many are not.

Any oversubscription criteria (siblings, whether or not there is a catchment and its boundaries, DC of staff etc) can be changed at any point, though there needs to be a public consultation about proposed changes.

Itscurtainsforyou Wed 08-Feb-17 22:00:16

Thanks - I couldn't see anything on the website but I'll go back and have another look

Campfiresmoke Thu 09-Feb-17 00:24:57

A lot of authorities don't have sibling ctoteria so perhaps they are just coming into line with others.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Thu 09-Feb-17 10:29:04

Our borough already did this a while ago for catchment areas as some school years there was only siblings and people next to the school weren't getting in because people miles away were as people got first child in then moved away.

TeenAndTween Thu 09-Feb-17 14:33:53

Often the big issue seems to me to arise when a school has siblings out of catchment as priority over standard catchment children.
What can happen then is a family gets first child in by living in catchment, then they move 10 miles away and the subsequent siblings then get in over and above local catchment children.
Our area goes
- siblings in catchment
- other in catchment
- siblings out of catchment
- other out of catchment
which I think is better.

The downside is if a family is allocated a school for their child due to more local ones being oversubscribed, and then the siblings can't follow. That could I think maybe be dealt with by a statement saying 'if allocated this school due to more local ones being oversubscribed then subsequent siblings will be considered as in catchment rather than out'.

golfbuggy Thu 09-Feb-17 14:51:50

As others have said, I'm sure this is not universal. Here, I think all schools (certainly all secondary schools) prioritise in-catchment siblings over other in-catchment children. However in-catchment children are prioritized over out of catchment siblings.
However, we are in an area where schools have defined catchments.

PatriciaHolm Thu 09-Feb-17 16:36:10

It's certainly not a blanket move. There are many variants on admissions criteria, both for primary and secondary, and there is nothing going on nationwide that mandates removal of the connection. It may well be that local authority schools in your area are going to be doing this but it would have to go to consultation first, and wouldn't affect academies as they are their own admissions authority. Which LEA are you looking at?

Itscurtainsforyou Thu 09-Feb-17 18:15:23

Thanks - ours is currently as teenandtween describes, but I'm told it's changing...
I'm in Trafford if anyone knows about that.

PatriciaHolm Thu 09-Feb-17 19:07:50

The consultation period for 2018 admissions in Trafford Primary/Infant/Junior community/VC schools has been closed and criteria suggested were-

- LAC/previously LAC
- siblings in catchment
- catchment
- sibs outside catchment
- other by distance

so no change?

OopsDearyMe Thu 09-Feb-17 19:09:58

But then how do parents mange to be in two places at once, surely that's the point behind it.

AppleAndBlackberry Thu 09-Feb-17 19:13:58

In our area siblings outside catchment are lower priority than non siblings in catchment unless the older sibling was allocated the school because their catchment school was full, in which case they are treated as catchment siblings.

HSMMaCM Thu 09-Feb-17 19:27:25

We've just had a problem where children were sent out of catchment as all the local schools were full. Now their siblings won't necessarily get into the same school, because they're out of catchment for that school. It's a mess.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Thu 09-Feb-17 19:37:40

Hardly fair for an only or oldest child from catchment living a few metres from a school to be sent miles away because a child eight miles away gets priority either though.

Itscurtainsforyou Thu 09-Feb-17 21:52:54

Patricia - that's good news, thank you. Although I wonder why I was told it was changing?

Middleoftheroad Thu 09-Feb-17 21:58:40

Agree with Tomorrow.

HSMMaCM Thu 09-Feb-17 22:08:27

I agree with tomorrow too. I also think that councils know full well how many children are approaching school age and should plan accordingly.

Allthebestnamesareused Thu 09-Feb-17 22:12:01

OopsDearyMe - they don't because they'll be bussed to school

Tomorrowillbeachicken Thu 09-Feb-17 22:55:12

Not sure about other boroughs but our area has had lots more houses built in the last three or four years. Some of the developments were even refused by the council then the developers went to central government to get permission.
No extra infrastructure is being built like extra school capacity so add in these two things plus a rise in birth rates in 2010, 2011 and 2912 and places are a PITA atm.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Thu 09-Feb-17 22:57:42

2012 lol.... I can't see into the future

prh47bridge Fri 10-Feb-17 11:35:36

I also think that councils know full well how many children are approaching school age and should plan accordingly

Councils don't have any way of knowing the exact number but they should have a rough idea.

Some councils have been good at planning ahead and ensuring that they had enough school places available in the right place. Some have been very poor, closing schools and selling off land even when it was apparent that the schools would be needed in a few years time.

admission Fri 10-Feb-17 12:42:21

Councils have not always been quick at reacting to situations where places are getting into short supply. It is not possible to be exact over school places as it is always a parents prerogative to express a preference for another school other than the most local school.
However when it comes to new developments, councils should be able to plan appropriately. There are various methodologies for estimating the number of pupils at primary and secondary level that any new development will need. At the same time as the new developments are approved then the council should be ensuring there is space on any large development for a new school paid for by the developer. They should also by now have realised that they need to insist the school is built (or paid for) before the development has been completed. However I am still amazed by how some councils do not understand that the developers will always if allowed to get away with it, not build or pay for the school until all the houses have been built. And how frequently the very last little bit of the housing does not get built, so they do not have to pay up.

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