[Report of the Director of Children's Services. To be introduced by the Cabinet Member for Children and Families.]
This report seeks Cabinet approval to commence a six-week period of statutory consultation to determine the Council’s School Admission Arrangements for the academic year 2021/22.
The Cabinet Member for Children and Families introduced this report which sought Cabinet approval to commence a six-week period of statutory consultation. This report and the consultation that would flow from it, if the report’s recommendations were agreed, would ensure that the Council’s proposed admission arrangements for 2021/22 were consulted upon and the co-ordinated scheme was set in accordance with the mandatory provisions of the School Admissions Code 2014.
In response to questions from Councillor Emery, the following information was provided:
Reasons for decision
Why do we consult? - This report and the consultation that will flow from it if the report’s recommendations are agreed will ensure that our proposed admission arrangements for 2021/22 are consulted upon and the co-ordinated scheme is set in accordance with the mandatory provisions of the School Admissions Code 2014.
The School Admissions Code (2014) requires all admission authorities to publicly consult on their admission arrangements where changes are being proposed. The Code stipulates that if no changes are made to admission arrangements, they must be consulted on at least once every 7 years.
We consult on our admission arrangements annually irrespective of whether or not there is a proposed change to the arrangements4. This is to ensure transparency and 3 In July 2019, Cabinet agreed that a formal consultation would be carried out between 9 September and 21 October 2019 on the future of Stamford Hill Primary and the Council’s preferred option of amalgamation with Tiverton Primary School. More information can be found on the Haringey website.
The Schools Admission Code 2014 (para 1.42) sets out that when changes are proposed to admission arrangements, all admission authorities must consult on their admission arrangements (including any supplementary information form) that will apply for admission applications the following school year. Where the openness on the contents of our arrangements and to allow parents, carers and other stakeholders who might not previously been interested in admission arrangements (perhaps because they didn’t have a child of school age) to make a representation which can then be considered as part of the determination of the arrangements.
Alternative options considered
We are required by the School Admissions Code 2014 (para 1.42 – 1.45 of the Code) to carry out any consultation on our admission arrangements between 1 October and 31 January each year for a minimum period of six weeks. We are not proposing any changes to the proposed admission arrangements for the year 2021/22. As set out in para 4.3 above, we consult annually on our arrangements irrespective of whether we are proposing any changes, to allow transparency and openness in the process.
This year we are not proposing a change to the oversubscription criteria for community and VC schools. While there are other ways admission arrangements can influence the allocation of school places set out in the Schools Admissions Code 2014 (e.g. designated catchment areas, identified feeder schools or giving priority in our oversubscription criteria to children eligible for the early years premium/ pupil premium) no alternative option is being considered at the time of writing this report.