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Help! How do I untie this knot? (Long, sorry)

(10 Posts)
mummy2zni Wed 08-Jun-16 08:40:50

Hi - am hoping for some advice. We need to move areas and I have no idea how to untie the knot of renting a house - finding a school.

Back story: Two DCs current ages 13 and 10. Both in a middle school yrs 8 and 6 respectively. DH has new job so we are now both working on the other side of "the city" to where we are currently renting. Bit of a no-brainer to move closer to our respective work and slash our commute times. Both DCs happy to move. We want them to finish up this school yr where they are & start new school year in new place. Have not arranged new property to move to as yet but have good idea of areas...

So... 1) ds is simple enough yr 8 to yr 9 - have been told by admission authority that there are places at 2 of the schools that we would like. Get house, apply to school and there we are... I hope...

2) dd quite a bit trickier : we need to indicate preferences for 3 schools as transition from yr 6 to yr 7. As don't have new address yet, need to apply from current (whole other county!) address; which of course means if school oversubscribed distance excludes. Once new address can be confirmed, submit change of address and the whole allocation starts again. Which makes me worry that we go for house A and still don't get a school we want but if we had chosen house B we might have!!

Also worried this may result in DCs at 2 different schools one (or both!!) further than anticipated from home (thus relying on us to get them there (they currently walk to school) plus our own commutes...

Argh I feel like I'm twisting in circles... must remember to breathe!! Surely we can't be the only ones who face this scenario..?

Any tips or hints would be greatly appreciated! Hope I've given enough info...

Ladymuck Wed 08-Jun-16 08:53:00

At this time of year in particular, and in some areas at any time, you can't control which school you get. And from year 7 children are actually very capable and can use public transport.

So you need to get used to the fact that you won't know which school your DD will go to before you move. Many siblings all over the country do not go to the same secondary schools (especially of course where there are single sex schools). And of course spaces may come up all the time, so if it is important that they are at the same school then that may be an option later. I would reassure your children that you will choose the best school for them as individuals (from those available for them). They may have different options, but that is life.

So choose a house that does at least have some proximity to public transport. I think that that is important for teenagers anyway - not everything they want to do will be in walking distance.

I can't see that there is a particular advantage to you naming 3 schools for your DD until you move, and don't understand why you've been asked to do that. Where in the country are you?

mummy2zni Wed 08-Jun-16 08:56:58

Thanks Ladymuck. We are in West Midlands...

Balletgirlmum Wed 08-Jun-16 09:02:23

Are you talking moving this September?

It seems fairly simple to me. Apply to one of the schools with places for your older ds now - if they have a place they have to give it to you. Check first if either have sibling priority.

Then apply for ds 2 under sibling priority. Chances are a place will come up unless year 7 is hugely hugely oversubscribed.

prh47bridge Wed 08-Jun-16 09:18:36

Once new address can be confirmed, submit change of address and the whole allocation starts again

Not quite.

Places for Y7 in September have already been allocated. When you move they won't redo the allocation. However, you will move up the waiting list for your preferred schools as you live nearer. If it is not possible to commute to your daughter's existing school the LA must find a place for her somewhere even if all local schools are full. Unfortunately this may not be a school you want and it could well be a different school to your son. If the allocated school is more than 3 miles from home by the shortest safe walking route the LA must provide free transport.

Balletgirlmum Wed 08-Jun-16 09:37:37

Have you enquired whether the two schools with year 9 spaces also have year 7 spaces or not? If they have spaces just submit an application which will be treated as late but if they have a space they have to give it to you.

PatriciaHolm Wed 08-Jun-16 10:16:29

The distance issue is essentially irrelevant at the moment. Yr 7 places are allocated already; either a school you want has a space for Sept in Y7, in which case they have to give it to you regardless of where you live, or they don't and you go on a waiting list for that school (your position on which may be determined by distance, depending on admission criteria). The LEA will have to find you somewhere.

Your best bet is to get your Yr9 into a school of your choice (though a school with a place now is unlikely to "hold' it for you until September; normally an offered place needs to be taken up asap, certainly within a couple of weeks. You are taking a little bit of a gamble that no-one wants the place in the next few weeks. Depends on the turnover at the school how much of a gamble that is though).

Then get your Yr7 onto the waiting list for that school (some secondaries have an admission category for siblings, which would put her up the waiting list, but check because it's not a given at secondary). There is usually some turnover in summer before Yr7 as kids get other schools they would prefer/go private.

mummy2zni Wed 08-Jun-16 10:42:19

Thanks for your replies. Forgot to mention we are expats also so school system boggles my mind at the best of times! Lol!

Don't think DH is going to be happy with a we're just going to have to kind of wing it response! He likes to be fully prepared with no surprises! Did I say control freak? grin

Balletgirlmum Wed 08-Jun-16 11:05:40

Some counties will hold a place until September if you apply 6 weeks or less before the end of the school year. Check the details on in year admissions on the local authority website.

catslife Wed 08-Jun-16 14:02:37

What are the admissions criteria for the 2 schools that have Y8/9 places now? If it is a school that has sibling at school before distance then you don't have to move before applying.
If there are places available you can apply from current address for ds and he will be offered a place now. It's possible that for your Y7 child to qualify for a sibling place your ds may have to start the new school before the end of the school year (but that could be worth it).
Some schools have an admissions policy like this:
siblings in catchment, other children living in catchment, non-catchment siblings, other children out of catchment. You can still apply from current address but you can change it when you move (which will move children up the waiting list).

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