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what happens if you move to an area, and there are not -any- school places for your child?

10 replies

jennifersofia · 07/09/2009 22:40

Does the Local authority have a responsibility to bus them to nearest school place?
Do you have to home school while waiting for a place? Seriously, what do you do?

OP posts:
cece · 07/09/2009 22:47

They will give you a place somewhere but it might be some distance away. Phone the office at the local council, and they will advise you

lucykate · 07/09/2009 22:49

we moved mid july 2006 to a new area. at that point, dd was ninth on the waiting list for a school place (3 primary schools in the village). she moved up the list once we moved in, as until we exchanged contracts (which only happened 3 days before we moved), they would only use our old address.

we just had to wait it out until places came up. while we'd been waiting to move, it was so frustrating as 5 school places came and went. ime, there was quite a bit of shifting about of places over the summer, and eventually dd was offered places at all 3 schools so we got to pick which we wanted. otherwise, it would have been a case of driving her to the nearest one with a place for her.

nelliesmum · 07/09/2009 22:50

Why move to an area with no school places? Didn't you check before you moved?
They have to give you a school place, you may not like the school or the distance you have to travel though!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow · 07/09/2009 22:59

There are some LEAs which really don't have enough primary school places - are you in one of those? If not, then you should be offered something somewhere, even if it's not what you would have chosen.

How recently have you spoken to the LEA? There's usually a lot of shifting about in the first couple of weeks of term, as pupils don't take up places or don't tell schools that they've moved away.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow · 07/09/2009 23:02

Should also have said that, usually, the responsibility for getting your child to school is yours, but check what provision youe LEA makes for school buses and/or help with fares.

alypaly · 07/09/2009 23:05

Apparently you dont have the right to go to a school in your catchment area. It is up to the school and when they are full, they are full.You can contest it with the LEA but u will probably not get any joy. It is then up to you to get your child to the next suitable school even if its miles away.

pixiblue · 07/09/2009 23:23

Depends on your situation and age of children. We moved to an area and were told local school was full. Put on waiting list and told he could attend when he was 8 otherwise.

I went for a tour of next local school (apparently also full) thought it was great and told by headteacher at the visit there was a place for ds1 if we wanted to accept it. We did. Therefore I have to use public transport to take ds1 & now dd1 to/from school as council washed their hands of us.

Council wanted me to send ds1 to a lovely small school in middle of nowhere, I don't drive so they would offer transport, however school relies heavily on parental support (rota for gate duty etc) and as I would have no access to the school I would also miss out on parent evenings, plays etc. The key factor for me was that there are only 2 classrooms in the small school and I have 5 children who at one stage will all be at school together, I didn't feel it would be in their interests to be crammed in together.

Contact the council but also visit your local schools to see what the situation is as they are aware of class figures soonest.

If you do keep them at home it's not the end of the world. Ds1 was delayed entering into the education system because we moved so many times over a short space of time (relocation) so missed about 5mths at the beginning of reception, but he soon caught up.

jennifersofia · 08/09/2009 14:43

We have not moved yet, but are planning to next summer. I will have one to get into Y3, one into Y5 and one into private nursery. I am worrying about it because I think it may be unlikely that there will be places in a good school for both my Y3 and my Y5.
I am planning on checking with the LA, thanks for the reminder. Also useful advice about exchanging contracts early on as possible.
I think part of the reason I am anxious is that dh would like me to start FT work in September, and I don't know if I will be able to do that if I have to stay at home with the kids waiting for a school place.

OP posts:
Fennel · 08/09/2009 16:55

LEAs vary a lot, ours has a policy whereby children moving into the area are guaranteed a place in one of their two closest schools even if both are full. Which really helped when we moved twice in quick succession. The LEA was really helpful with sorting it out for us, the first time it was simple and the second time we had to appeal to get into our local, oversubscribed school, but they encouraged us and let the dds in straight away the day after they received our appeal.

in other words really do check out your LEA, I think we were lucky with ours but certainly some do make sensible provision for new children arriving.

StewieGriffinsMom · 08/09/2009 17:00

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