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LEAD Academy Trust - consultation on proposed admission arrangements for the 2015/16 school year

The LEAD Academy Trust are consulting on the admission arrangements for the following academies:-

  • Edna G Olds Academy
  • Hogarth Academy
  • Huntingdon Academy
  • St Ann’s Well Academy
  • Sycamore Academy
  • Warren Academy
  • Windmill L.E.A.D Academy

These arrangements are for pupils who will be starting school for the first time in September 2015, or requesting admission to the School between September 2015 and July 2016. The consultation is taking place between 9th December 2013 and 07 February 2014.

The LEAD Academy Trust are responsible for offering or refusing places at these academies.

We would welcome your views on the proposed arrangements, which include changes from those agreed for the 2014/2015 school year.  These changes are to:

  • remove criterion 5 from the admission criteria (i.e. pupils attending the relevant academy nursery will no longer be given any priority in the oversubscription criteria); and
  • increase the period of time the waiting list is kept open for Hogarth Academy and Windmill LEAD Academy from 40 school days to an all-year round waiting list in line with the other academies in the trust.

The reasons for these proposed changes are:

  • In the Autumn term 2013 the Office of the Schools Adjudicator found in a number of cases referred to them that admission arrangements which included a nursery criterion did not comply with the School Admissions Code in that it failed the test of being “fair”. The Adjudicator regarded it as unfair that proposed nursery criterion “may have the effect of making parents seek a nursery place which does not meet their needs or leaving them without a reception place because they need more child care than is offered.” She took the view that this unfairness outweighed the educational benefits of the proposal.
  • The Adjudicator also made reference to paragraph 2.16 of the School Admissions Code, which covers compulsory school age and deferred entry. She took the view that it is unfair to put any pressure on parents to enrol at the school earlier than they are legally required to. “Parents have an absolute right to wait until their child is of statutory school age before school admission. Therefore, I think if there is any part of the school’s admission arrangements which results in a parent feeling under pressure to send their child to school, albeit to the nursery class, earlier than they wish and before they are legally obliged to do, then this seems to me to go against the assumption behind this paragraph of the Code, and I consider it to be unfair.”
  • In each case considered by the Adjudicator she also found the nursery criterion to be unfair because the admission arrangements to the pre-school “would not be lawful if used for admission to the school.” She stated, “I consider that to have admission to the school in any way dependent on unregulated admission arrangements of the pre-school is unfair.”
  • In autumn 2011 the Local Authority consulted on arrangements for admission to community schools in the 2013/14 school year to reduce the period of time the waiting list is kept open. At that time Hogarth Primary and Windmill Primary were community schools. When the schools converted to academy status they adopted the admission arrangements agreed by the Local Authority for community schools.  However, as the other academies within the trust operate an all-year round waiting list, the Academy Trust now proposes for all of their academies to operate the same waiting list arrangements. Paragraph 3.19 of the School Admissions Code states that each admission authority must maintain a waiting list for at least one term in the academic year of admission, for every oversubscribed school.

For the reasons set out in the paragraphs above it is proposed that the LEAD Academy Trust 2015/16 admission arrangements be changed to include the removal of criterion 5 from it’s admission criteria (i.e. pupils attending the relevant academy nursery will no longer be given any priority in the oversubscription criteria) and to increase the period of time the Hogarth Primary and Windmill Primary waiting list is kept open in line with the other academies within the trust.

Have your say

We hope that you will view and comment on the proposed arrangements, because we wish to ensure that they meet the needs of all children and families within the area.

The easiest way to have your say is to complete the online response form:

Alternatively you can:

email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Please write ‘LEAD Academy Trust consultation 2015/16’ in the subject line.

or write to: School Admissions Team
LEAD Academy Trust admission arrangements consultation 2015/16
Children & Families
LH Box 14, Loxley House
Station Street
Nottingham   NG2 3NG

The deadline for responding is 07 February  2014.