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Waiting lists - is this position good or bad?!

(8 Posts)
ImASecretTwigletNibbler Tue 11-Mar-14 09:19:43

We are no.17 on the waiting list for our preferred school and I have no idea whether that's good or bad! Is there any way of judging or is it just 'how long is a piece of string'?! (I know the list postitions can change, btw)

GarthsUncle Tue 11-Mar-14 09:20:39

Are you in an area with high mobility or where many people go to private school?

ImASecretTwigletNibbler Tue 11-Mar-14 09:21:55

Not many people go to private school but I've no idea about the mobility.

AcrylicPlexiglass Tue 11-Mar-14 09:22:30

I think it's "how long is a piece of string?", sadly! It's so varibale from school to school. Certainly doesn't sound hopeless but neither is it almost definite. Could you ask someone with local knowledge? Maybe teachers/parents/head at your child's primary?

Michaelahpurple Tue 11-Mar-14 17:57:41

How big an intake is it? If, say two classes of 21, that sounds fairly hopeless, if much bigger perhaps less so. I imagine the school can tell you how many have got in from the list in the past

tiggytape Tue 11-Mar-14 18:02:36

As Michaelahpurple says, if it is a huge school with 200+ pupils per year group and situated in an area where there are other good schools nearby, your chances are much better than if has is 1 class of 30 and the only school in a 4 mile radius.

Waiting lists are so variable even year on year. If lots of people are moving away / going private / desperately hoping for a different school which they eventually get offered then the list should move quite a lot. If however it is a hugely popular school that very few people would decline unless they were moving or had a massive scholarship for private school, then it might be a bit slower.
You can ask where it went to last year but even that wouldn't give you a definite answer.

ImASecretTwigletNibbler Tue 11-Mar-14 18:18:57

PAN is 350 - does that mean per year?

purpleroses Tue 11-Mar-14 18:29:13

Yes, PAN is the number they normally admit in a year group - so that's a large school meaning number 17 on the list might well get in. My friend's DS go in from being number 20 initially on the list to a much smaller school - though in a catchment where quite a lot go private. Your best bet is to see if you can find any parents of children in older year groups who got places via the waiting list, or see if you get a friendly person on the phone at the LEA who may tell you how much the list typically moves for your particular school.

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