Change School Allocations
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We have set up this page to try and obtain support to change the way that the School Allocation system is operated.
We applied for our child to attend a local Primary School in September. The area that we live in has two schools. One of them, the one we applied to, we can see from our house, hear the children playing and see them walking to school. The other school is about a 5-10 minute walk. We were offered a school 1.5 miles walk away.
The criteria for the school is as follows:
a) Looked After children or previously Looked After children*.
b) Children who live in the linked area* and who have a sibling* on roll at the Academy at the time of application.
c) Other children who live in the linked area*.
d) Other children who do not live in the linked area and who have a sibling on roll at the Academy at the time of application.
e) Other children
The tie break criteria is as follows:
Where there are more applications in any one category, priority will be given to those living furthest from the nearest alternative school.
Distances will be taken from the address point of the child’s home to the address point of the nearest alternative school (using the Local Authority standard method as described in the published information to parents)
If two children are tied for the last place, after the above distance tie-break has been applied, then a process of random allocation, undertaken by someone independent of the Academy, will determine who is allocated the last place.
In our naivety and not fully understanding the amount of applications the school receives we did not receive a place here. Unfortunately, we live 0.2miles (as the crow flies) from this school. Our next nearest school is 0.4 miles away which we also did not get into. Ironically, we would have to walk past our preferred choice of school to get to the one we were allocated. The last person allocated a space in this school lives less than half a mile from their next nearest school but we have to walk three times this distance to get our child to school.
The school was created to serve the estate that we live on. The fact that we live so close to this school is actually a downfall.
People move to areas to be able to get into good schools. The criteria would be acceptable if you were able to get into your next nearest school. The fact is we have 4 schools closer to us then the one we have been allocated.
Why give us a choice of schools to apply for when we are unable to get into them?
Why live in an area where you are unable to attend school?
The fact that we are so close to the school and can see it from our house, and also see our house from the infant play area and playground is extremely frustrating. Surely part of attending school is also the social side, to encourage relationships outside of school. However, this is something that will be extremely hard for our child to do as their school friends will not live in the area. It has been hard to explain to them that they will not go to this school that we walk past on a regular basis. Starting school is not just an upheaval for the parents but also the child.
Ironically we have a better chance of getting into a school 20 miles away than one on our doorstep!
The County Council have a Safer Routes to School Scheme that they are enrolling. In this they are stating that they are encouraging children to walk or cycle to school and hope that the scheme will result in less traffic and congestion, improving air quality in and around schools. Surely giving someone an allocation to a school they will drive to will not help this or the ongoing issues with congestion and air quality.
We are trying to appeal this decision as find it ludicrous that we are not able to get into a school on our doorstop. However, the success rate is extremely slim:
2014 to 2015: 231 appeals were heard, of which 3 were successful
2013 to 2014: 230 appeals were heard, of which 10 were successful
2012 to 2013: 304 appeals were heard, of which 12 were successful
In light of all of this we have had to apply to schools out of our area which will mean moving house. Not only is this expensive and an upheaval we do not feel this is acceptable. It has been heart-breaking to see the school every day and not be able to get our daughter into this school.
What is already an emotional and a huge change is being made even more so by the way this system works.
We would like your support to try and help win our appeal and to try and change the way the system works. It always used to be a case of your go to your nearest school. Why is this now different?
Please share this with anyone you can, help us to fight this battle
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