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moving back to UK - potential prob with finding a school - any advice?

12 replies

MuchLessTiredNow · 11/01/2009 18:02

we are in Germany and moving back to the UK in August- but don't know where yet, and won't until may. Need to find a place for ds1 and 2 (year 1 and reception) but severely limited because of the above (strangely enough!). I am so fed up with this I am considering leaving dh to commute weekly and moving in with my mum for a few months and sending them to the school in her village while I house hunt - if I did this would I be able to keep them at the school for the rest of the school year if I cannot find a house in the catchment area of the school?

OP posts:
Nell12 · 11/01/2009 18:05

Once your child has a place at a school, you can move out of catchment area and your child's place is generally secure; I have known this to happen on a number of occasions.

Littlefish · 11/01/2009 18:08

You won't be able to be allocated a place in a state school until you are actually living in the country or area. This is because schools can't keep places open for anyone. Someone else might turn up an hour later needing a place and be able to start immediately and the school would have to give them the place.

Nell is right. Once your children are in the school, you can move house. Are there places in the right years at the school near your mum?

MuchLessTiredNow · 11/01/2009 18:11

yes, there are places at the school near my mum. I thought that was the case, fish, so wondered if this was a good plan (ie to move in with my mum) - are there rules about how long you have to live in an area first? Sorry to ask silly questions, but I have been in Germany since ds1 was 20 months, so the UK thing is new to me.

OP posts:
LiffeyMermaid · 11/01/2009 18:13

If you are really LIVING with your parents and not just sneakily using their address then that is legit.

Littlefish · 11/01/2009 18:19

As far as I know, there is no minimum amount of time you have to live in an area before you can register at the school. We have children who move into the area one day, and turn up at school the next!

Are you likely to find a house in the area so that the children can stay at the same school for the rest of their primary or infant school years? It would be a shame to have to move them twice.

Alternatively, have you spoken to the schools you would like your children to go to once you are back permanently in the uk? What are their numbers looking like?

MuchLessTiredNow · 11/01/2009 18:20

Nio, I will really be living with mum, but probably (hopefully) only for 4 months until I can find a house - obviously I cannot get the ball rolling on that until I get back and can have viewings. As I said, I just wondered if I did that, if I would have to move them after I had found a house - if so, that is a bit of a non starter for me.

OP posts:
MuchLessTiredNow · 11/01/2009 18:22

fish, the plan is to move into our own house so we can stop moving them - dh is army and so they have already had 3 houses - and the oldest is only just 5 and is already on his second school. If I stay in quarters, we could be looking at potentially another 4 school moves in primary years alone.

OP posts:
Littlefish · 11/01/2009 18:23

You wouldn't have to move them after you had found a house, but are you planning to live close enough to make it a reasonable journey to school for the rest of their infant/primary school years, or would you keep them there for a year and then move them to another school? That was the basis for my query.

Not great to move them after a year IMO.

MuchLessTiredNow · 12/01/2009 11:10

No, I agree it is not great to move them - but difficult to make a perfect decision when balancing DH's career as well - esp as at the mo he is the only earner. I will try and find a house close to my parents, but as I said, can't do that really until we are back. Thanks for the posts!

OP posts:
Littlefish · 12/01/2009 13:10

Yes, it sounds like it's going to be a bit of a juggling act for you for a little while. All you can do is make the best decisions possible at the time.

Good luck with the move.

McDreamy · 12/01/2009 13:14

Muchless if you are in the military the rules are slightly different. You don't have to be physically in the area before a school will reserve a place but you do need a posting notice. Have you got a HIVE where you are? Ask them to provide you with the Service Children's Education contact details, they will help you too.

I moved from Cyprus in Oct and had to find a Y1 place for DD. I had a guarenteed place before we moved home.

Littlefish · 12/01/2009 14:16

That's interesting McDreamy, I didn't know that.

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