Next year’s school admissions process underway

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THE SCHOOL year may have only just begun but parents of children due to start or change school for next year need to think about where they would like their child to go.

The admission process for children due to start primary, junior or secondary school in 2012 is starting this month and leaflets explaining how they go about making an application are being sent to parents.

This year, parents are being encouraged to visit East Sussex County Council’s website to find out more about the process, the schools available and to make their school choices and applications.

All the relevant information is on the council’s website at www.eastsussex.gov.uk/schools but for those who don’t have access to the internet, printed copies of the admissions booklet are still available on request, within schools and in libraries.

Councillor Nick Bennett, the county council’s lead member for learning and school effectiveness said, “These are really big and important decisions to make, so we always encourage parents to find out as much information as possible about the schools that are available before they apply.

“Ofsted reports and exam results are important but they only say a certain amount about a school.

“I would urge parents to contact schools for their prospectus and try to visit schools because that can be the best way of finding the right one.

“All information parents need is available on our website.

It’s laid out in a way that makes it easy to work through and the application process is very straight-forward.

“We have found that the online application process is the most straight-forward and efficient way.”

Parents who use the online service get an automatic acknowledgement that their application has been received and can also opt to hear by email which school has been allocated. A printed booklet and application form is also available.

Advice and information is available from the county council’s admission team on 0345 6080190 or email admissions@eastsussex.gov.uk.

Parents can also seek advice from the council’s Family Information Service on 0345 6080192.

The closing date for applications for secondary school places is October 31 and decisions on the allocation of places will be posted to parents on March 1, 2012 which is the national allocation day.

For primary school places the application deadline is January 15, 2012 and parents will be notified of allocations on April 27 2012.

Any parent who is unhappy with the place that has been allocated can appeal to an independent admissions appeal panel.

Families who don’t have internet access at home can use the electronic information points provided by the County Council or internet access in libraries.

Leaflets have already been circulated to prospective secondary school parents and separate leaflets for prospective primary and junior parents will be distributed later this month.