A complaint to the Office of the Schools' Adjudicator about ICHS admission arrangements has been upheld: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/s ... bridge.pdf
The issues raised:
Matters for consideration
7. The referrer said that the LA did not allow children who lived outside the
catchment area to sit the eleven plus test for the school as it is
oversubscribed. This was considered to be unfair and discriminated
against children who live outside the catchment area.
8. When I looked at the arrangements for the school it appeared to me that
they may not comply with paragraph 1.20 of the Code. This paragraph
sets conditions for grammar schools that use factors other than test scores
as oversubscription criteria.
9. The details about the waiting list did not appear clear to me and I thought
they may not comply with paragraph 2.14 of the Code.
10.I also considered that the admission arrangements for the sixth form may
not comply with the Code because there appeared to be no PAN for Year 12 as required by paragraph 1.2 of the Code. In addition, the application
forms used by both the selective schools appeared to request information
that is prohibited by paragraphs 2.4 and 1.9 of the Code and that students
joining the school in Year 12 may have to meet different academic
standards to those continuing from Year 11 which would contravene
paragraph 2.6 of the Code.
39.The Code allows selective schools to select their pupils entirely on the
basis of ability and to admit those who scored highest in a selection test.
Alternatively, the Code also allows selective schools to take other factors
into account and set oversubscription criteria for children who meet pre-set
standards in an ability test. These arrangements take into account where a
child lives as well as their performance in an ability test. They are
therefore subject to paragraph 1.20 of the Code which for the reasons set
out above the arrangements do not comply.
40.The Code allows parents to apply for school places in any area no matter
where they live. The Code in paragraph 1.7 requires admission authorities
to apply oversubscription criteria to all applicants. In order to apply the
oversubscription criteria to all applicants, all of them must have a test
score. To refuse to test an applicant who does not live in the catchment
area does not therefore comply with the Code.
41.The operation of the waiting list for the school as described in the LA’s
composite prospectus for 2015 and in the arrangements for 2016 is not
clear and for that reason does not comply with paragraph 14 of the Code.
Practices for the waiting list set out in the documents provided do not
comply with paragraph 2.14 of the Code.
42.The admission arrangements for admissions in 2015 and 2016 to the two
schools’ sixth forms do not comply with paragraphs 1.2, 1.9, 2.4 and 2.6 of
the Code as set out above.
To be honest, I'm amazed that they got away with it for so long!