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Right, I need advice- I finally got a job... BUT ..

Discussion in 'Personal' started by slingshotsally, Jun 28, 2015.

  1. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter


    After many moons, I have a job.

    But it's in a completely different area to where I am currently and therefore I need to get school places arranged for my children.

    It's very late in the year and the central admissions deadlines have all passed.

    Over the next summer holiday I will need to let my property (I can't sell quickly to release equity in time for new term), find another property in the new area to rent...

    Has anyone else had this problem- If I take the kids out of current school, they may not have a place for September in the new area.

    Should I leave them at current school, rent a property and then wait for a place (thereby having two sets of bills, run two properties) with partner taking extended leave from work to look after kids? I cannot commute (over a hundred miles away)


  2. emilystrange

    emilystrange Star commenter

    why don't you get in touch with admissions in the new area tomorrow? nothing can probably be decided until you know the situation there.
  3. katycustard

    katycustard Occasional commenter

    We moved back from abroad in August a few years ago, and sorted out schools, 1 primary, 1 secondary, from abroad over the phone! Neither child saw their school until about 2 days before term started when both HTs said to come and look round. It is doable, but you need to get on the phone tomorrow as emilystrange said!
  4. katycustard

    katycustard Occasional commenter

    Oh congratulations on the job!
  5. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    Depends on policy for admissions and available places. We came back from abroad a few years ago and although I contacted schools admissions well in advance we were told we couldn't apply for a school place until physically back. I filled in the forms and returned them the day we landed, just before the start of the Christmas holidays. PCjr didn't get a place until after Feb half term.

    Definitely call admissions asap.

    Congratulations on getting the job.
  6. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    If they're primary age, you may have a problem. Fewer secondary schools are oversubscribed.

    It might be worth talking to your new head - it's possible strings might be pullable on your behalf. Even if no strings are pulled, the head may be able to tell you that Bash Street School has places...
  7. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

    Hi all,

    Thanks for replying.

    I followed the advice on phoning up central admissions.

    There are a "few" schools which have places available- they are either have poor OFSTED ratings. All other schools oversubscribed and central admissions says that they won't know exactly what places are available until parents have actually taken up places in September.

    Currently my kids are at outstanding school and they have progressed well in their learning, and I am not sure I actually want them to attend a school where there are so many areas that need development.

  8. cheesypop

    cheesypop Senior commenter


    I was midway through a reply but have just read this.

    If you are moving to the catchment area of these schools that have places then this is what you will be offered and it might be worth a look around rather than just relying on OFSTED.

    However, if you can be flexible about where you live, move to area X where all the schools are good (if that's possible) then go to appeal if you have to. They go on all summer - 25th August I did one - and say that your children are moving 100 miles and it is important that they settle into a new area and make friends and going to the local school is so important for that - they do take that stuff seriously at appeal.
  9. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

    Hi cheesypop,

    Thank for your advice it's extremely useful to know. I am know doing as you suggest and looking for good school's catchment areas as I am trying to find a property to rent right now.

    Once that's done, hopefully I be in a slightly better position generally.

    Thanks to everyone who posted, the advice has been extremely helpful.

  10. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    When I had to do this when my kids were going into year 2 and 4, I looked at every option available.

    I contacted all the local schools and all were full so then contacted the schools near my college and found 2 were due to have 2 children leave in the right age group.

    I went for that option, combined witha kids club as I didn't finish work till 5.

    The drawback was my kids had to get a bus on their own to the club ( although this was a school bus) but meant them getting a bit more streetwise.

    The pluses were that they were nearer to my workplace so I could pick them up at 5.20 instead of 6.30.Also I could drop them off at 8.45 and get to college by 9.

    Also quite by chance, they did go to a really nice school and achieved well academically.

    It cost me loads of money in afterschhol fees, had lots of drawbacks such as my kids notmaking local friends and then after I had an op and medical treatment, I had 2 periods of being off work but having to get them to school over 16 miles away.

    It was very stressful but it was the only way to accept the job over 160 miles away from home.

    So maybe widen your options and contact schools directly.
  11. Each school you apply to will have its own criteria. In ours, for example, C1 is statement (or whatever new term is), 2 is looked-after - they trump any other consideration - but third is proximity to school as crow flies.

    There will be plenty of choice for you but you will, for obvious reasons, the same ones as everyone else, want your children to go to the over-subscribed one.

    If you were applying to my over-subscribed school, you would have to fill in the form on the school's webpage and copy it to the LA. This varies according to whether the school is an academy or LA. You would be placed on a waiting list that is juggled daily according to who is added, left, changed circumstances, went to appeal (the appeals have finished now btw). You would not be receiving a final answer until mid-September. We have many parents who send their child to the allocated school and then pull them out in October because they moved up the waiting list. People get very narky when they lose out to someone who just appeared in the neighbourhood a week before new term, when they'd been trying to get in since February but hey-ho.

    You have to send yours somewhere in September. If you don't already have a house comfortably within the catchment area of your chosen school, you will be sending them to whichever next one has spaces. If you haven't even got a flat in the new area when you apply, then you're not up for consideration. I think your choice is going to boil down to picking the next-best and staying with it, or picking the next-best and moving your kids out of it as soon as a place becomes available at your chosen one, bearing in mind that no place may be available for next year at all.
  12. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Since when has it been like this?

    Delighted my grandchildren go to a nice, ordinary, local school. Reminds me to emphasise to my daughter that she really shouldn't move house in case she jeopardises their places.

    Always go to the school directly, SAL. Cut out the middleman. As for OFSTED? I've taught in schools that got good ratings and didn't deserve them and schools that should have had been highly rated but weren't. Can you be released to go up there for a couple of days? Take a look for yourself?
  13. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Really sensible advice, with which I absolutely concur. Sometimes schools are much better (or worse) than any look at an OFSTED report might indicate. Ask some locals- much better placed to say.
  14. I am required to tell any parents who wish to approach our school directly that there is only one way to go: fill in the form and send it to the LA. We don't get involved with personal conversations/confrontations. If you don't like it, appeal, and an independent panel will decide if the school's walls need stretching.
  15. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    Policy must vary in different authorities.

    My son changed schools in year 10 in September and I emailed local schools and one had a place.I didnt ever contact the LEA directly.

    This is Surrey.
  16. I expect it does, and between LA and academies. Were the schools you emailed over-subscribed? I don't think it's a problem if they're not.
  17. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

    Hi All,

    I thank you for your posts they have been extremely useful as everything is more complicated when children and school places are involved.

    Just to update you (as you were kind enough to post)...

    1. I found a place to rent, I have filled in references which are to be checked and I shall pay the deposit as soon as these are clear.

    2. Partner works in IT, has requested change of role in order to work remotely (LINUX, servers, updates and God know what else). This is going through HR and should be confirmed by mid July. YAY- no more commuting on train and tube!!!

    3. Just waiting for Tenancy agreement now to set the ball rolling for school places.

    4. As regards Out-standing or RI, GWD, I completely understand!! I am just going to accept and deal with whatever is presented. If I find that my children's learning suffers, then I shall apply to be placed on waiting lists for other schools. There is no real alternative as my partner and I don't earn enough to send them to private school.

    YOU LOT ARE WONDERFUL- the tes forum advice has been really great and have helped us make a difficult situation much less stressful.


  18. Glad it's all working out!
  19. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    Sounds like it is all going well. My experience with PCjr for a place in a heavily oversubscribed area was that it was a very stressful few months but by being politely persistent with central admissions and by enlisting anyone we could find to support us, such as ward councillors, it was all fine in the end.

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