Nice to hear from you again, Sally-Anne. I'll do my best .......
I thought I had the admission rules pretty well sorted after 6 months of research, but now I am concerned that distance from school gates is not the only criterion?
The usual admission rules apply, starting with statemented children, children in public care, in-catchment children. If too many children are in-catchment, the next criterion is applied, and so on, finishing with distance as the ultimate tie-breaker.
The rules for voluntary-aided and foundation schools could be different. (A summary can be found towards the back of the current Guide for Parents.)
"Guest" is right in pointing out that (at some schools) it may be there were no vacancies at all, not that people of a higher priority were allocated the places.
There is an urgent need for BCC to either build more grammars or enlarge the existing to cope with the increase in population plus ALL out of county applications should be rejected.
I'm not sure there's any evidence that the increase in population so far
has affected grammar school numbers. There is no significant difference in the number of pupils qualifying immediately with 121+ (2113 as at 1/12/05, compared with 2115 as at 29/11/04). I doubt that an extra grammar school would be viable, and as far as existing grammar schools are concerned, the ones I know about either have no space for expansion, or are so large they would not want to become any bigger.
Bucks couldn't ban out-county applications even if it wanted to. It would be illegal. (The Greenwich judgement)
Why allow the kids to go throught the trauma of sitting the exam to then be told there are no places for them ...... Do you know if the VR score is taken into consideration? There is no mention of this on the admission criteria.
I'm not an apologist for Bucks, but they do make it quite clear that there is no guarantee places will be available at late transfer. The problem is the law does not allow them to reserve places in the expectation that other children might wish to join the school at a later date.
The alternative to the present system would be to abolish it - and this is something Bucks might be considering for the future. Personally I'd rather see late selection continue, despite the problems that accompany it.
The VR score was dropped from the admission criteria two years ago, and replaced by distance.
We intend to appeal for our daughter but from what I've heard you have to have a very strong case - surely the fact that they have attained the necessary VR score proves that!
I fear you would be wasting your time if you appeal on that basis. In effect you are not appealing for a
grammar school, but rather for the
grammar school named in your submission, and need to put forward specific reasons for wanting that particular school
As to whether you need a "very strong case", it would be more accurate to say that your case has to be stronger than the school's case for refusal. It's called the "balance of prejudice". (The more overcrowded the school, and the more problems they have to cope with, the stronger their
case will be.)
Hope this helps.