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In-Year: Will any school have a place?

(8 Posts)
Spalva Mon 24-Sep-12 18:21:01

We are new to the UK and its education system. So far, we find it a bit confusing.

We sent in our in-year applications (one for secondary school -- starting Year 8) at the end of August -- about two and a half weeks ago -- because we had to wait a week or so for a copy of a signed rental agreement. We are in Essex.

For my daughter in Year 8 we have had a no from Anglo European and a no from another school in the town next to us. Now we are waiting to hear about our third choice, a very good and popular school two stations from us (FYI because dd is bilingual and has always been an third-culture kid we are interested in schools with strong language programs, which also seem to be some of the more popular state secondaries).

Anyway, I just keep wondering "What school is going to have a place at this late date?" I mean, really? All these schools are oversubscribed. Why would they have a place? Do I need to just call up every school around here and find out who has a place? The LA said it would be three weeks for my dd in secondary and we're closing in on that date and haven't heard from the third school? (they said it would be two weeks for dd in primary and that was up last week).

I don't even know how far away should I look? Probably in Basildon as it seems to be quite unpopular!

Any advice?

titchy Mon 24-Sep-12 18:44:59

Essex have to fun you a place. It will probably be at an unpopular school though. She will be expected to travel up to an hour (they will pay travel costs if this far away though). They should offer you a place within a reasonable time - three weeks tops. They should also be able to tell you where there are places. If there literally no places in the county they can force a school to take your child - but it will be essex's choice not yours.

titchy Mon 24-Sep-12 18:45:33

Find you a place, not fun you a place blush

titchy Mon 24-Sep-12 18:46:32

Oh and you can appeal for a particular school if you are given one you don't want.

prh47bridge Mon 24-Sep-12 20:16:13

You should apply to Essex, not to individual schools. Any offer must come from Essex, not the school. And, as Titchy says, they must find a place for you somewhere. It is not up to you to keep ringing schools to see if they have a place. It is up to Essex to sort it out for you.

Spalva Mon 24-Sep-12 21:26:42

We have applied to Essex -- about two and a half weeks ago, so the three weeks is not up yet. I'm just wondering what could be offered. So far away is a possibility. That's good to know.

Honestly, I'm not too concerned about distance. And I don't mind a satisfactory school. But a school with behaviour problems -- like the one in our catchment area -- is a real concern to us as this child experienced bullying all through primary school and suffered serious depression because of it. She is very clever and nerdy (science and robotics) -- which isn't a popular thing -- and quite a tomboy. In fact, we were up by the local school and one boy stopped dead in his tracks and asked all his friends if my daughter was a girl or a boy. And the skirt will not help: once in year 6 she had to wear a skirt for a show and all the little kids went around saying there was a boy in a skirt. She is pretty and wears her hair in an above-the-shoulders bob and has gorgeous blue eyes, but her demeanor is tomboyish. I was also mistaken for a boy until I was in my 20s though many said I should be a model.

I wonder if I can appeal any decision for a "behaviour problem school" with her history? I mean, of course, she can get through it again. She came out of primary school quite strong. I suppose I need to let it all go and trust that good will come.

Thanks for your help.

Blu Tue 25-Sep-12 11:51:49

Whatever school you are allocated initially you can go on and stay on waiting lists for preferred schools, but you will need to out yourself on those waiting lists.

Spalva Wed 26-Sep-12 08:47:31

Well, it turns out dd has been assigned to the local high school. They've got a good new head and it's a large school so I'm sure she'll find her niche. After all, she's always been in schools with about 10 kids in her year so choice was always pretty limited. She's happy -- and she can walk to school.

Thanks again.

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