Friday, 2 August 2013

Update on the School Situation

You may remember a little while back that I was thinking about new schools for my children as we are soon moving house. Well, after contacting the schools I found that they were all pretty much full up! So I went further afield, something I didn't really want to do as it would involve public transport, but again, it was difficult to find places. Ironically, the closest school does have places for Star and the Little Man but not Boo, so it looks like it will be my first choice. As far as Boo is concerned, none of the eleven schools I have tried so far have places for her. By law she will be provided with a place which could possibly be a couple of bus journey's away, and a different school to her siblings.

Another spanner in the works is the fact that come September the LEA are changing things so that the schools themselves handle all applicants for school places. This means things could be even more difficult as they will be thinking about their schools not about the child. It could be a lot more difficult to get places.

After speaking to someone at Schools and Admissions I have been advised to submit my application forms to them so they can get them over to the schools before September and we will be on the waiting list. The problem is, I have until 20th August to do this with proof of my new address. Just to complicate things even more, we've just heard that the contractors will not be handing over the house until the 2nd of September. This is the third date we've been given so far so it could even be later.

So, what do I do?

I will submit my forms with my new address and if they require proof try and delay them. Hopefully, it won't be an immediate request and we might just be in the house in time.

I'm going to put both girls down for the nearest schools and hope that we will be near the top of the list for Boo as we are very close to the schools and her sibling will be there (hopefully)

I will choose the other school that had a place for Star and then pick the next nearest which had no places at all. Then I guess it will be a complete lottery if we get any places at all.

If it comes down to applying for schools in September then I will have the backing of the girl's current/previous headmaster who has offered to speak to the schools on my behalf.

So, while most parents are out buying new uniforms for their children to go back to school I'm feeling lost. I don't even have a school for my girls and everything seems all down to chance. As a person who likes order and control in my life it's driving me insane.

Home schooling as been suggested to me and to be honest I'd love to give it a try, but I don't have the backing of the family. The Dad will not even hear of it and Eldest Daughter thinks it would be a big mistake. I know from experience that home schooling is not easy, so without the family backing me I don't think it's an option.

At present my biggest nightmare would be having to accept a school place miles away. I don't mind walking if it's near enough but I've tried every school in walking distance without any luck. On my current budget I'm not even sure I could afford the bus fare.

Actually that is not my biggest nightmare, that would be having the girls in different schools miles apart, and then the Little Man in a different nursery.

The whole situation is currently a nightmare and I just want to wake up and know what is going to happen in September.

3 comments:

  1. Interestingly MK council have just taken BACK responsibility for school places to prevent the schools cherry picking who they want [and who they don't]. Although a lot of the parents don't like this, it is a much fairer way of doing things and it means that catchment areas are adhered to again which was not the case when schools had control over intake. The only exception is the Catholic schools, who can decide who they accept through their criteria but even then if they've got a space and no waiting list then they have to offer that place to the next applicant no matter what their religious leanings. Everyone has to apply through the council here, even for faith schools...

    I can well believe that council departments don't talk to each other but it is totally ridiculous isn't it??

    If they do put your children into different schools or schools that require transport have you asked if they're willing to foot the bill for that?? If you can't physically get them there due to lack of a vehicle or lack of money then that is not your fault. They can't reasonably expect you to be in two or three different places at the same either. Miracle workers we mothers are not.

    As you know we homeschooled Ethan for a couple of years. It was lovely but we both took it onboard and enjoyed it. However, it was Ethan who wanted to go to school eventually as he wanted the social interaction with children his own age. No matter how much you try it is pretty much impossible to recreate that at home. We went out loads, joined the local Home Ed network etc but even then it's just not the same as school. He is an extremely sociable child and does three after school sports clubs, two of which are free. You just can't find that for free if you home ed. There are pros and cons but overall I don't regret sending him to school. I did at the start, but not now...

    This will sort itself out for you as they can't just not be given a place at school. I think you may have to fight a bit to make it doable especially if they're split up or given places at a silly distance away. What you're asking for is not unreasonable so stick to your guns. Can you give your paperwork relating to the new house as proof that you're moving??

    Keep us posted. Can totally understand your frustration, I'd be just the same. Drove the council and school nuts when we moved to MK. I think they just gave Millie a place to get me off their backs lol...

    Hugs

    Sharon xx

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  2. Gosh, really hope all this works out and is sorted for you before September - what a nightmare! Good luck with getting what you want - and what's right for the children, which should be their first decider!

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  3. I'm sure it will all work out ok - sometimes things only just work out at the last minute when we would like it to be sooner - but they usually do work out in the end! As someone who really didn't think I could ever cope with homeschooling, I have to say it has been the BEST 3 years of our lives. My sons have thrived and that in itself has been proof to those whose backing we didn't initially have that it has been the best choice for them. Also homeschooling doesn't have to be a permanent choice - just until a space comes up in the school you want. I know several people who have done it as a short term solution and a place has come up for all of them. I'm sure you would be great as a homeschooler - children learn so well when they have 1:1 attention and you don't need to do anywhere near as many hours as they do at school because they learn so much better when everything is tailored to their needs, interests and at a level that is just right for them. Good luck with it all - hope it is sorted quickly for you. xxx

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It is so nice of you to stop by my blog, I would love for you to leave a comment too. I will reply to as many as I can and if you are a blogger you can expect a return visit from me. Many thanks, Anne xx

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