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messageCharter School admissions change
Posted by James Barber 27 January, 2012 11:05

The campaign to have the Charter School admissions policy administered differently has been successful. The school with support from Southwark Council tried to fight this.

In a frankly damning report from the Secretary of States adjudicator the school will now have to truly use safe walking distance from the school as per their admissions policy and not the closest driving distance that they were actually using.

The report is 2Mbs PDF so I can post it here. Edited to add link to report.
Sections 52-57 were eye opening.

The campaign obtained supporting evidence from the Police, Ordnance Survey and others.

--------------------
Regards cllrjamesbarber@gmail.com
07900 227366
Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward
Skype cllrjamesbarber
[www.jamesbarber.org.uk]
[twitter.com]



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was 2012:05:28:14:13:59 by James Barber.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Chippy Minton 27 January, 2012 11:50

To clarify, this now means the catchment area effectively contracts further, right?

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Fuschia 27 January, 2012 12:18

Where is the report then?

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by James Barber 27 January, 2012 13:34

I'll happilly email the report to anyone who asks for it but at 2Mbs I can't post a copy here.
And yes it effectively moves the catchment area north and east.

--------------------
Regards cllrjamesbarber@gmail.com
07900 227366
Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward
Skype cllrjamesbarber
[www.jamesbarber.org.uk]
[twitter.com]

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by murphy 27 January, 2012 14:10

My guess is it will mean those living on the east side of Lordhship Lane will be losers out and those living around Dog Kennel Hill and Denmark Hill will be winners.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by bawdy-nan 27 January, 2012 14:30

post it as a google document with a link?

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 27 January, 2012 16:37

Have sent a pm with my email address - I'd like a copy of the report please James.

I'd like to see them put catchment above siblings in their admissions heirarchy - am quite sure that would make it a more authentically "community" school.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by intexasatthe moment 27 January, 2012 17:46

Have sent you an email James requesting copy .
Thank you for the info - correct decision IMO .

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by heber jumble queen 27 January, 2012 20:20

Does this mean that the applications currently being considered for entry in Sept 2012 will be subject to these new guidelines? I have no reason to question whether this is a good or fair decision - but if effectively the likely catchment area of 'safe walking distance' have shifted since submitting applications in October, I may well have made some different choices.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Curmudgeon 27 January, 2012 20:21

Dorothy Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Have sent a pm with my email address - I'd like a
> copy of the report please James.
>
> I'd like to see them put catchment above siblings
> in their admissions heirarchy - am quite sure that
> would make it a more authentically "community"
> school.


I'd like a copy too

But I think all schools should put siblings above catchment

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 27 January, 2012 21:46

But why for secondary? Especially when so many of the secondary schools are single sex, and, generally in London, pupils do not need to rely on their parents to get them to school?

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by FatherJack 28 January, 2012 08:23

One nil to the kids of Bessemer/DKH who once lived on the "wrong" side of the tracks ie Wanley Road.....who'd have thought that a school would manipulate their admissions policy, no doubt it was for the benefit of the wider community towards Dulwich Village!.......

No doubt many people thought Charter were completely transparent.......perhaps they are now!

I'm lovin' it!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was 2012:01:28:08:26:45 by FatherJack.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Curmudgeon 28 January, 2012 10:03

heber jumble queen Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Does this mean that the applications currently
> being considered for entry in Sept 2012 will be
> subject to these new guidelines? I have no reason
> to question whether this is a good or fair
> decision - but if effectively the likely catchment
> area of 'safe walking distance' have shifted since
> submitting applications in October, I may well
> have made some different choices.


I think this is an extremely valid question - James do you have any knowledge of this please?

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by intexasatthe moment 28 January, 2012 10:45

Mmm yes ,tricky . ( sorry tricky not correct/adequate adjective if you're a parent or child affected )

And presumably there may be children currently at other schools who were unsuccesful in gaining entry at yr 7 who would have got in if the school had been recognising shortest/safest walking distance .
if they're on the waiting list will this decision give them priority ...

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by championofthehill 28 January, 2012 11:34

To answer Curmudgeon and Jumble Queen's question, it is unlikely that anyone applying would have done so in the understanding that the admissions policy was not being administrated correctly.

The question about children who were exluded historically from gaining a place because of this issue is an interesting one. It would seem to be fair for the school to reorder its waiting list taking this decision into account.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 28 January, 2012 12:39

Yes please, we need an answer to heber jumble queen's question (good luck for today hjq).

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by fox1 28 January, 2012 13:39

No charter have never had a catchment area as it states those living closet to the school ie shortest safe walking distance are given a place i live on champion hill estate and last yr my child did not get a palce at charter so i appealed and won in my letter they said that if the schools mapping system had have included wanley road in its measurements then my daughter would have been given a place as i did live closer to the school after this process we thought they would always expect wanley road but they didnt and trust me this is not the first time i have a copy of an appeal that was won in 2000 along with 7 other all on the wanley this has been brought to the attention of the school for 10 yrs and still nothing so we feel we had no chioce but to go higher for all those children living in the community that should go to there local school but didnt get in and had to go to another school. And they wouldnt have ruled in our favour if we didnt have the evidence please read the report posted by one of the eligible parents/objectors as people call us

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by intexasatthe moment 28 January, 2012 13:48

fox1 - well done on appealing ,it's a long and horrible process I know ,so good on you for perservering .
Am glad ( and slightly amazed as IME having "right " on one's side doesn't always mean that one is succesful ) that the school have been told to abide by it's own over subscription rules .
Wonder if they'll be as scrupulous at checking out applicants' supposed addresses ?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was 2012:01:29:08:58:11 by intexasatthe moment.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Curmudgeon 28 January, 2012 13:56

championofthehill Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> To answer Curmudgeon and Jumble Queen's question,
> it is unlikely that anyone applying would have
> done so in the understanding that the admissions
> policy was not being administrated correctly.
>


Actually I would assume that all those applying for secondary placement next year did so on their understanding of what the historical application of the stated catchment area by 'safest walking distance' means. So if every child on your street goes to school wearing the Charter uniform and you are within their stated no place offered above 1800 metres and this school has the shortest safest walking distance then surely your application process would be informed by this.

I make no comments on the fairness or otherwise of the adjudication, I have not seen the paperwork yet. But I think the question over when this will be applied this year is extremely relevant and I hope James can answer this soon.

I believe that other schools such as London Oratory / Cardinal Vaughan were caught 'bending the rules' and the adjudicator decision has been applied for the following year's round, even if the ruling was made before the application closing date.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit was 2012:01:28:14:08:55 by Curmudgeon.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by westof 28 January, 2012 14:14

Well if they have been skewing the admissions towards Dulwich, maybe that explains why the proportion of pupils with English as a second language is so low (4% of the 2011 GCSE cohort compared to 38% at Harris Girls & 57% at Kingsdale for instance).

To be fair, given their location, I would have expected the percentage to be pretty low in any case, but I was surprised at quite how low it is. And tbh I'm not even sure what English as a second language is meant to indicate at secondary level anyway.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 28 January, 2012 16:00

Must admit I was completely unaware of this particular issue wrt the Charter School until yesterday.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by James Barber 28 January, 2012 16:29

I'll email a copy to those tat have sent me an email address tomorrow evening when I have a chance and investigate filling on google docs and providing a URL.

The adjudicator makes it clear in their report that they expect their adjudication to used for 2012 admissions and have checked that the timings will work.

Residents who led this, and they've done a really thorough job, are also pushing for any waiting lists to reflect the adjudication.

--------------------
Regards cllrjamesbarber@gmail.com
07900 227366
Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward
Skype cllrjamesbarber
[www.jamesbarber.org.uk]
[twitter.com]

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Curmudgeon 28 January, 2012 19:01

And Southwark residents who have acted in good faith by carefully considering the past history of the "safest walking distance" as quoted in school policies have been misled. Parents consider stated policies and the historical boundaries of where children have and have not secured places at schools. I'm pretty sure many use the Directgov schoolsfinder website to work out which schools are what distance from their postcode.

Yet now their educated 'choice' has been altered restrospectively. Removing choice from the application process? This affects Southwark residents in all directions of Charter school.

Sounds like a huge, legal, quagmire to me.

As Heberjumblequeen says - parents may well have chosen differently



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit was 2012:01:28:19:23:06 by Curmudgeon.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 28 January, 2012 20:45

Lovely! So now I find out I have more or less wasted a place on my secondary application form then. And the ONLY co-ed school just-about-within-reach is ruled out.

What a fiasco.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by fox1 28 January, 2012 21:12

i am one of the objectors and its not like its affecting anyoneone unless you live on cleve hall or champion hill as i do why shouldnt my child and others go to there local school my child did attend bessemer grange and i live on champion hill est. its 7min from my house to bessemer and 11min from my house to charter if u use wanley rd last yr my child did not get a place at charter but because they do not expect wanley rd they wanted her to do a 35 to 40min journey to charter so thats why we objected so i do live close enough to the school and i agree if you dont live within walking distance to the school not by car on foot then i dont think you should get in to charter no mater what

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by fox1 28 January, 2012 21:16

and i had to appeal for a place ok i won but other people were given a place who lived futher away then me

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by prickle 28 January, 2012 21:23

The the 'safest walking distance' is an interesting concept. I assume that by 'safest' we mean safe from traffic. By allowing the walk from the top of DKH to Charter through Wanley, you will be walking through the top of Greendale. This is fine in daylight but definitely would not like my children to do this in the dark in winter.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by Dorothy 28 January, 2012 23:43

Fox1 - just wanted to make it clear that I have no argument with you or anyone else whose child should be at the Charter school because they are within closest walking distance.

I think what I (and possibly others on this thread) am saying is that we were completely unaware of this issue re. the "true catchment" if you like, and, had we been, then we wouldn't even have included Charter on our application list, as we live on the other side of East Dulwich in the sort of grey area where you might or might not get a place. Now that there will be a whole group of children who will get places as the result of this hearing, then we are now firmly out of the loop and our applications are in effect wasted.

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by fox1 29 January, 2012 06:58

dorothy i know what you are saying i appealed for charter and during my research i descovered so intresting imformation charter have 180 place if 200 appiled and 180 were sibling all the places would go to the 180 then if there were place left they have other criteria them walking distance. its a wired one i hope it all works out for you roll on march

messageRe: Charter School admissions change
Posted by James Barber 30 January, 2012 08:02

Apologies for those who asked me to email the adjudicators report - just done it.

It is clear that the problem was having a stated adminissions criteria and then not administering it.
The appeal includ evidence from local Police that the routes were safe. Evidence from the ordnance survey that other schools used a different layer of data. That Chater school was effectively using distance by car and not safe walking distance.

That the methods used by the school were contrary to a surprising number of statutory requirements.

So anyone who applied on the basis of the advertised criteria should not be disadvantaged and an injustice has been resolved.

That Southwark council appears to have supported the status quo is worrying.

--------------------
Regards cllrjamesbarber@gmail.com
07900 227366
Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward
Skype cllrjamesbarber
[www.jamesbarber.org.uk]
[twitter.com]

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