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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:23 am 
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Please can anyone help me....in a real pickle at the moment my DD really liked a school that is about 7.009 miles from home. This school is usually very popular and I am worried in case she misses out on a place. My DS is at another school, that is also good but wanted to keep them apart if possible. My problem is do I risk it and put the first school down (DD really liked it ) and put DS school down as a second choice and use the sibling card. I would hate to put the first school down and she misses out on the school her brother goes to. Does anyone know if there is a good chance she would get in on her second choice as a sibling even if the school is oversubscribed. Clear as mudI know,but any advice would be great. :? :? :?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:28 am 
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OK, whether you put a school first, second or third does not really matter. If there is space for you at a school you will get an offer whether you put the school first second or third. But you won't get offered second choice if there's space at your first choice, you won't get offered third choice if there's space at your second or first choice etc.

So you need to put down the school you really really want first - if you don't get a place at it, you should get the DS's school (assuming that siblings do get priority in their admissions policy) unless there are more siblings than places (is this the case - it does sometimes happen!)

In Kent there did used to be a system where it did make a difference if you put a school second or third - some schools wrote into their policies that they gave priority to children who had put the school first. This system stopped in Kent a few years back - it's terribly unfair.

Hope that answers your question.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:30 am 
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Domake sure you read the up to date admissions policy for each school you are considering, and do make sure you fill in any additional forms required.

Do not rely on other parents, headteachers, and sometimes even some LA staff for information - they all get it wrong at times! Make sure everything you do is backed up by up to date information you have read.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:53 am 
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A useful thread, thanks.

I have a related question. If I put school A down first and my son's score turns out not to be high enough, will KCC look at school B listed second and offer him a place there if his score is high enough for that? Or will the places have all gone to people who put it first?

Each school says 'put us first' but they would say that, wouldn't they?

I'm confused!

Thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:05 pm 
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You need to put your prefered school first. So if you want to get the school your DD prefers you must put it first or you won't get it at all, as schools are in priority order and you will be given the highest school on the list that has a space available. If there is no space available at the first school then she will get sibling priority at the 2nd school, your DS's school (assuming that sibling priority is listed in their oversubscription criteria) And if, in the unlikely event that there are too many siblings to offer her a place at DS's school ( which is virtually unheard of at secondary schools), then she will be offered the 3rd choice and so on...
So it is pretty certain that if she doesn't get the 1st school, then she will get the 2nd but make sure you have 2 more "back up" schools, just in case, as you never know!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:09 pm 
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Coffeecup

The schools say "put them first" because if you really want that school, you must put them first. You will always be offered the 1st school if you meet the criteria and there is space, if not, they look at the 2nd school and so on. The schools do not know where they were ranked on the forms, so they have no idea whether you put them 1st or 4th. They used to know this information quite a few years back but not anymore.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 1:24 pm 
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I am finding you all a bit confusing. I still stand by my explanation above. Schools say "put us first" because they want to be able to quote as many people as possible putting them first choice in their blurb - after all it sounds good doesn't it? 5000 parents put us first choice, 30 got places. Frankly I wouldn't put a school down that I had no chance of ever getting into as it's a waste of a space on the form, but parents will still listen to these dumb comments from schools.

You should put schools down in the order of preference because if you were given the first choice when really you wanted the second choice it would be irritating - and of course people would say to you "why did you put it down second if you wanted it more than your first choice?".

So yes, let's say your child passed the 11plus so you put down a superselective, an ordinary pass school, and some other schools, then if you put the superselective first and did not make the cut-off it would not have reduced your chances of getting into the ordinary pass grammar school. You would still get into the ordinary pass grammar school whether you put it first or second if they had space for you and your child had passed the 11plus.

You might of course do it the other way round if you preferred the "ordinary pass" school to the superselective. Or you might decide you don't want a grammar school at all and not put any grammars down.

A horrible mistake that some people make year after year is to just put one school down thinking then they must be given that! Or to put down 5 schools they have no hope of ever getting into. All that will happen in these cases is that you will be allocated the closest school with space that is not on your form - it could be miles away or the worst school in the world.

Good luck!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:02 pm 
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Mystery has raised some very good points, which I forgot to mention...So I'll second them.

Whatever you do, make sure you have a chance of getting a place at the chosen schools. There is absolutely no point in puttting a school on your form that you have no chance of getting, It's a complete waste.
I still can't believe how many people make the mistake of choosing schools they have no chance of getting or just one school. I know a neighbour who put just one school on the form, didn't get it and was allocated the worst school possible. She appealed but lost because no other schools had space!! Her daughter now attends said school which is also a lot further to travel to than the nearer, better schools!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:45 pm 
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It REALLY DOES matter that you put your schools in preference order. Schools may say put us first but that has no reflection on whether they offer it to you if you have. This was a historic issue where schools would only offer if you named them first but this is not allowed any more. At the end of the day, its the admissions criteria for each school which matters and whether you stand a chance of getting in on that basis.

Not many people understand the process (page 6 of the Kent admissions document 2013). Basically, the admissions authority will write to ALL schools on your CAF at the same time to ask each of them if they can offer you a place, according to their admissions codes. If more than one say yes, then you will be allocated the schools according to your preferences.

Therefore, so long as you have a possibility of getting in, you must put down your favourite school as your first choice and have a fall-back school that would be a 'definite' place as your fourth choice for a school that you actually like. If you don't do the latter and none of the schools can offer you a place then you could end up in a school either miles away or one which no-one else wants, for whatever reason.

Hope that clarifies.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:25 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:24 pm
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Thank you all.

I think I get it now!

I think my confusion was because of the super selectives where no one knows what the cut off is going to be. But for argument sake if DS got 97 (random figure used deliberately) and the cut off for my first choice was 99, it is good to know that he'd be considered for my second choice where the cut off might be 98. I thought I was going to have to second guess the cut off which is not easy when it changes every year, and put my second choice first in case I missed the opportunity but risk not getting my first choice!!

Easily confused new to 11+ mum (aka coffeecup)


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