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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 2:12 pm 
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Location: Herts
The admissions code requires schools to provide a "fair and straightforward admissions system that promotes equity and fair access to all."

If there are crucial details on the website that do not appear in the published admissions critieria would this be a case for the failure of a school to provide the above? Is it a legal requirement for the school to provide all required information in the document rather than on the website? DG


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 4:09 pm 
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1.47 Once admission authorities have determined their admission arrangements, they must notify the appropriate bodies and must publish a copy of the determined arrangements on their website displaying them for the whole offer year (the academic year in which offers for places are made).
Admission authorities must send a copy of their full, determined arrangements to the local authority as soon as possible before 1 May.

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1.51 Composite prospectuses - Local authorities must publish online - with hard copies available for those who do not have access to the internet - a composite prospectus for parents by 12 September in the offer year, which contains the admissions arrangements and any supplementary information forms for each of the state-funded schools in the local authority area to which parents can apply (i.e. all schools including Academies). They must ensure that this information is kept up to date throughout the period in which it is possible for parents to apply for a place for their child, and that it is written in a way that makes it clear and accessible to all parents.

For appeal purposes, any discrepancy between an online copy and a hard copy might be viewed as simply a technical error, unless it could be clearly shown that a specific injustice was caused in the particular case.
However:
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3.4 In all cases, the panel must refer to the local authority and the admission authority (if the appeal is for a school that is its own admission authority) any aspects of the admission arrangements that do not comply with admissions law.

Outside of the appeals framework, a letter could be sent to the admission authority and to the local authority, querying any serious discrepancies. If the response is unsatisfactory, it ought then to be possible for an individual to raise concerns with the DfE on the basis of 'fair access'.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 7:51 pm 
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Thank you. So would the admission authority be the school in which case that avenue has already been explored. So best now to go straight to the local authority and then onto the Office of the Schools Adjudicator if the local authority is not interested? Who in the local authority should the query be addressed to? Thank you for your help, it is much appreciated. DG


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:00 pm 
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Who in the local authority should the query be addressed to?
Difficult to be specific as it can vary from authority to authority - but try "School Admission Arrangements" and it will probably finish up in the right place!

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and then onto the Office of the Schools Adjudicator if the local authority is not interested?
I'm not sure whether the Adjudicator would help. Objections to determined admission arrangements have to be submitted to the Schools Adjudicator by the deadline of 30th June each year.
I also note that appeal panels no longer report breaches of admissions law to the Adjudicator - they are now required to report such breaches to the Local Authority and admission authority.

The last time a member on here had a complaint about the admission arrangements (some years ago), it was after the Adjudicator's deadline. She phoned the DfE (fair access), who appeared willing to help but insisted that she should first contact the Local Authority to see if they could resolve matters.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:10 pm 
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Location: Herts
Thank you, this is exactly what I needed, a chain of command to follow. So does it seem that the D of E is trying to get the local authority to take on the role of policing the admissions criteria of the schools within its area? DG


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