Hi there just after some advice as I'm new to this secondary lark! Son has got a place at catchment school which is quite good. He wants to go to another school however that we put as his first choice that is only 1.1 miles away but they choose the more affluent side of town for their tiny catchment! I've been told that his WL position, (was 9th, now 11th which I don't quite get either) is favourable and last person got in last year at 1.2 miles in May. It's just the waiting! He said he wants other school even if it meant finding out the day before he starts school!!! Most of his friends are going there. The catchment school I've heard may be more supportive with his ASD (no statement or EHCP) but I thinks he wants the academic focus of this other school. Do I appeal on the grounds of his ASD. He is ok now but am not sure his (or my) anxiety levels will be okay until May! Would be grateful for any advice.
To deal with the waiting list first, that is ordered using the admission criteria. A late applicant who is in catchment or lives nearer to the school than you will go ahead of you in the waiting list. You can therefore go down the list as well as up.
Having ASD will not of itself win you an appeal. It will only help if you can show that your preferred school is better for ASD pupils than the allocated school. If the allocated school is more supportive for ASD pupils that won't fly.
In order to win you need to show that the disadvantage to your son from not attending this school outweighs the problems the school will face in having to cope with an additional pupil. Simply wanting the academic focus isn't enough. You need to show that there are specific things this school provides that the allocated school doesn't which are particularly relevant to your son. That can include extra-curricular activities. So, for example, if your son is musically talented and the preferred school has a variety of musical activities (band, orchestra, choir, etc.) but the allocated school doesn't that would form part of your case.