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Admissions policy 2024

Introduction

Admissions policy September 2024 for primary and secondary community and voluntary-controlled (VC) schools in Stockton-on-Tees.

All governing bodies are required by Section 37 of the Children and Families Act 2014 to admit to the school a child with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan that names the school. This is not an oversubscription criterion. This relates only to children who have undergone statutory assessment and for whom a final EHC Plan has been issued.

Where there are more applications for a school than there are places available, places will be allocated in order using the oversubscription criteria. 

For primary schools, attendance at a school nursery does not guarantee a place in the reception class of that school.

Priority 1

Looked after children and all previously looked after children, including those children who appear (to the admission authority) to have been in state care outside of England and ceased to be in state care as a result of being adopted. Previously looked after children are children who were looked after but ceased to be so because they were adopted (or became subject to a child arrangements order or special guardianship order).

Explanatory notes

  1. A 'looked after child' is a child who is (a) in the care of a local authority, or (b) being provided with accommodation by a local authority in the exercise of their social services functions (see the definition in Section 22(1) of the Children Act 1989) at the time of making an application to a school.
  2. A child is regarded as having been in state care outside of England if they were in the care of or were accommodated by a public authority, a religious organisation, or any other provider of care whose sole or main purpose is to benefit society
  3. Previously looked after children are children who were looked after but ceased to be so because they were adopted includes children who were adopted under the Adoption Act 1976 (see Section 12 adoption orders) and children who were adopted under the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (see Section 46 adoption orders).
  4. Child arrangements orders are defined in Section 8 of the Children Act 1989, as amended by Section 12 of the Children and Families Act 2014. Child arrangements orders replace residence orders and any residence order in force prior to 22 April 2014 is deemed to be a child arrangements order.
  5. Section 14A of the Children Act 1989 defines a 'special guardianship order' as an order appointing one or more individuals to be a child's special guardian (or special guardians).

Priority 2

Pupils with a Special Educational Need (SEN) who are going through a statutory assessment and who have been identified as needing a 'named' mainstream school.

This criteria applies to those children who have a Special Educational Need, who are going through a statutory assessment and have been identified as in need of a 'named' mainstream school that can offer the enhanced support and resources they require to meet their specific SEN.

Priority 3

Pupils who have a brother or sister permanently living at the same address, who are still at the school when the pupil begins. This criteria only applies to siblings who are of compulsory school age, not younger siblings who attend a nursery setting attached to a school (primary applications only).

A brother of sister is defined as a brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, adopted brother or sister, or children of partners who are permanently living at the same address as a family unit. In all cases, the parent who receives the Child Benefit for those children must permanently live at that address with the children.

We will consider brothers or sisters who live in separate households because the parents are separated and have shared responsibility for the children under conditions covering exceptional social or medical reasons. This does not include separate families living together in the same property.

If there are other family situations where there are different carers such as aunts, uncles or grandparents, each case will be considered individually.

Priority 4

Pupils permanently resident (the address at which the child is registered for child benefit), who expresses a preference for that school (proof of address may be required) within the admission zone who have returned a Common Application Form by the closing date (31 October for secondary applications and 15 January for primary applications).

When a school is oversubscribed with in-zone applications (there are more applications from children living in the admission zone of the school than there are places available) we will allocate places to children permanently living in the admission zone (Criterion 4) according to their distance from the school measured in a straight line "as the crow flies" (Criterion 5).

Priority 5

Pupils who live closest to a particular school measured in a straight line "as the crow flies".

The LA uses a Geographic Information System, known as GIS, to identify and measure the distance from the central point of the home to the central point of the school. The distance is measured electronically from the central point of the school taken from the council maintained Local Land and Property Gazetteer, LLPG, (the same point for all applications) to the central point of the home (including flats) also taken from the LLPG. The GIS undertakes all measures in the same way for every applicant, to ensure consistency and fairness.