How requests are processed
The local authority will make decisions for community and voluntary controlled schools based on the circumstances of each case and in the best interests of the child concerned. Where preferences are expressed for own admission authority schools, the local authority will pass the request and supporting information to these schools.
Consideration will include:
- taking account of the parents’ views
- information about the child’s academic, social and emotional development
- where relevant, the child’s medical history and the views of a medical professional
- whether they may naturally have fallen into a lower age group if it were not for being born prematurely
The views of the headteacher of the school concerned and the child’s early years setting will also be taken into account.
In order that such requests (supported by evidence) can be fully considered, the parent will be asked to submit their request together with an application for the normal age group by the deadline. This ensures that if the request is refused, the child’s application for preferred schools will not be disadvantaged and the request can be considered appropriately including the views of the preferred schools either prior to the offer date or after. The parent will be informed of the implications of making such a request.
- if their request is refused, the parent must decide whether to accept the offer of a place for the normal age group, or to refuse it and make an in-year application for admission to year 1 for the September following the child’s fifth birthday
- if the request is agreed, their application for the normal age group may be withdrawn before a place is offered
Parents must make a new application as part of each main admissions round (see transfer to secondary below). Requests to continue working out of normal age group would need to be made whenever the child moves schools.
When informing a parent of the decision on the year group to which the child should be admitted, the parent will be notified of the reasons for the decision and where possible, the decision will be made prior to the offer date for the child’s chronological year group.
Where it is agreed that a child will be admitted out of the normal age group and, as a consequence of that decision, the child will be admitted to a relevant age group (ie the age group to which pupils are normally admitted to the school) the local authority and admission authority must process the application as part of the main admissions round on the basis of their determined admission arrangements only, including the application of oversubscription criteria where applicable.