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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 4:17 am 
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On the over-subscription selection criteria of our local grammar schools the third criteria is "medical reasons".
My DC has recently been diagnosed with a condition recognised under the disability discrination act and wondered what the procedure would be for us to use this as criteria to get DC in to a grammar school.

DC is in Y5 and a strong candidate to pass, however we are conscious that DCs condition can/may put them at a disadvantage during the lead up to the exams. Our first GS of choice is also our nearest school, however it is always over-subscribed and there is no guarantee of getting in.

I would appreciate any advice on how to pursue this - it may well be that we won't need to, but it would be nice to know "how to" if it is needed.

Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 7:31 am 
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When you fill in your CAF there is a box which asks about medical conditions, and whether you'd want to use the medical condition for entry.

If you have already filled in your CAF, I think you should ring the LEA concerned and discuss the situation with them and they will be able to advise you accordingly.

You could also leave it to an over-subscription appeal, but there is no guarantee that you'd get entry using that criteria, they would argue that you should have informed them.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 7:41 am 
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it looks like OP is in talking about year 5 so still has time to fill in CAF and so should tick the box on the form.

there have been some threads about DDA and medical grounds,

from what I gather there are 2 factors to consider:

1) is there a statement somewhere stating that this is the only school which can provide the education for this child with a particular condition - this is the one that is usually listed on the admissions criteria?. If such a statement is made I think it is rarely for a GS, as.....

2) overiding requirement is for academic ability and hence for the potential to cope at GS - this is where the second factor comes in - if the child does not get the required mark on the day is it because of acute problems with their condition?which mean that, although they would normally have been expected to pass,for reasons related to their illness they did not - this comes in at a non qualification appeal


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 8:15 am 
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Quote:
....... the third criteria is "medical reasons".
The phrase more often used for this criterion is "exceptional medical reasons" - because the test applied is usually so strict, namely 'Is this the only appropriate school?'

Quote:
..... DCs condition can/may put them at a disadvantage during the lead up to the exams.
This is a separate issue. If unsuccessful either in the 11+, or at the allocation stage, you could, as Herman says, take your case to an appeal panel.

If there were to be any disadvantage during the test itself, you could request the admission authority to consider whether, under the Equalities Act, any reasonable adjustments could be put in place with regard to the testing arrangements.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 9:54 am 
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Yes and I presume if your DC fails and you got to a non-qualification appeal, you need to be careful not to shoot yourself in the foot and show that your child is not suitable for a grammar education.

Good luck.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:03 am 
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I noticed from another thread that you are in Kent.

I would contact KCC and ask them. From what I can remember there is a different route for admissions for children with Special Educational Needs. I don't know if this would apply to your DC.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:24 pm 
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Location: NW Kent
My DS has Aspergers and although not necessarily a medical condition we were not able to use this "medical condition" in order to help secure a place at our chosen school. It did however, i believe, help us at appeal. IMO unless a child is statemented it probably needs to be a medical condition that has quite a bit of impact on the child.

The school my DS initially got a place at described medical conditions, at the open day, as "not dyslexia" but things like "a parent in a wheelchair and therefore needing as local a school as possible".

Not sure if that helps at all.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:05 am 
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thanks everyone.

I suppose I'm lucky in that the best grammar and the best comprehensive in the area are actually on the same site and both are the closest school to where we live so my argument is the same: if she passes - it is the closest grammar, if she fails - it is the closest comp.

My DD has epilepsy and so I might argue that going to the closest school is safer for her in terms of getting to and from school independently, also, if there is a medical emergency I can get there quickly etc. My DDs condition affects her sporadically and symptoms may include confusion, disorientation and so forth - so for me distance is important to maximize her safety.

The introduction of the Equalities Act last October I would imagine, will have an impact on schools as it emphasises and offers more protection to people with disabilities.

Based on what everyone says, it looks like her condition is not enough to use "medical grounds" in appeal - however I will still tick the box on the form and argue it nonetheless if needs be!

Fluffy66 - I sympathise with you it must be very tough - my family/DD is still adjusting to DD's condition.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:51 am 
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When I filled out my dd's caf 2 years ago, I didn't tick the box for medical grounds, thinking my dd didn't come within that remit (she is partially deaf).

We weren't allocated the grammar school and were going to appeal on the grounds of the grammar school being small and their accoustics in relation to a partially deaf person (as well as it being the only school to offer astronomy - a subject which she's been interested for years and attends the local club, all of which could be 'proven').

I made (what I thought) was a good case, had letters coming out of my ears from her consultant naming the school and letters from her astronomy club, but never got to argue the point as she was offered a place off the waiting list, so that saved us from going to appeal.

At that time I was berating myself for not ticking the box to use the medical grounds for entry. But here's the rub, they look very closely at the circumstances and it's only the really most deserving cases which are given entry using that criteria. Now, upon reflection, although the case I had was good and it would have had a good chance on appeal, I'm not so sure it would have been enough to use for the medical condition entry. That being so, if you fail entry by ticking the box, I'm not sure you would then be able to use that arguement on appeal, where they would possibly be a little more lenient with the condition. I suppose the question is (and Etienne and Sally Anne may know this) do the panel already know that you failed entry by claiming medical grounds previously???

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:03 am 
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Snowdrops wrote:
if you fail entry by ticking the box, I'm not sure you would then be able to use that arguement on appeal, where they would possibly be a little more lenient with the condition.


An appeal panel is not simply “reviewing” what was taken into consideration at application for admission. It may look at any reason an appellant wishes to put forward as to why the school is the most suitable for their child. There would be no implications at all for the appeal in having attempted to apply on medical grounds and having been refused.


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