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In Case You Missed It: This Weeks Education News


So you needn’t worry if you don’t have time to scour the internet for all the latest news as this service will provide you with links to the most topical articles in one place.


BBC NEWS – Boys now reading as well as girls, study suggests

Boys appear to have caught up with girls on reading ability, research into what children are reading for pleasure suggests………..


THE GUARDIAN – Gove tells schools to think local in history lessons

Education secretary gives English Heritage £2.7m in programme to revamp the history curriculum…………..



BBC NEWS – Universities warn on overseas students income loss

University heads are warning that the tightening of student visa rules risks undermining the drive to raise income from overseas students……..


BBC NEWS – Rise in EU students applying to Scottish universities

There has been a 6% rise in the number of European Union students applying to Scotland’s universities this autumn…….


BBC NEWS – Attempts to get poor students to university ‘failing’

Attempts to encourage children from poorer homes to go to university have failed, according to a study………..



DEPARTMENT FOR EDUCATION – Academy freedoms for Pupil Referral Units

The Government’s Behaviour Advisor Charlie Taylor has called on the best Pupil Referral Units (PRUs) to take advantage of academy freedoms, to drive up quality of education and develop closer relationships with schools in their area……….



BBC NEWS – Pay school governors – Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw

Governors of struggling schools in England should be paid, the new chief inspector of schools, Sir Michael Wilshaw, has said………



DEPARTMENT FOR EDUCATION – Vision for cultural education will inspire all children and enrich lives ~ A response to the Henley Review of Cultural Education

New national youth dance company to be formed. The first national youth dance company is to be set up as part of a review designed to ensure all children have their lives enriched by cultural education………..



DEPARTMENT FOR EDUCATION – £50 million summer school fund launched to help disadvantaged children into secondary school 

A £50 million summer schools fund to help the most disadvantaged pupils opens today. The money will help up to 100,000 pupils making the transition from primary to secondary school, a time when Ofsted research shows performance can take a significant dip……..



THE GUARDIAN – The schools crusade that links Michael Gove to Rupert Murdoch

Michael Gove meets Rupert Murdoch frequently and is an enthusiastic backer of the ideas put forward by the head of his education division…………..

BBC NEWS – Secondary school places in England to be announced

Hundreds of thousands of children in England are finding out whether they have a place at the secondary schools they want to go to…….


THE GUARDIAN – Should Dominique Strauss-Kahn come to Cambridge?

There’s a petition campaigning for the Cambridge Union to withdraw his invitation. But doesn’t free speech extend to the former IMF chief too?…….


THE GUARDIAN – Atlantic Records founder bequeaths £26m to Oxford University students

Ahmet Ertegun and widow Mica to fund graduate scholarships in biggest donation for humanities students in university’s history………….



My Child Didn’t Get Into The High School They Wanted – What Do I Do Next?

As we speak tens of thousands of families throughout England are being informed that their son or daughter was unsuccessful in their application for a place in the High School of their first choice and in some cases their second and even third choices. According to the Telegraph analysis of the published data shows that there has been an increased demand for Academies, Free Schools and Grammar Schools and this in turn has raised the rejection rates for 2012. The fact that you are far from alone in your lack of success is of course, no consolation, if you are a disappointed parent or student who has missed out on a place in your preferred establishment.

For many people the next question is: Do I appeal against the decision and if so how do I go about it?

If you do decide to appeal then you have at least 20 days from the day you received the rejection letter in which to lodge an appeal in writing with the admissions authority. The admissions authority responsible will depend on the type of school you are applying to attend:




Type of School Who is the admission authority? Who deals with complaints about arrangements? Who is responsible for arranging/providing for an appeal against refusal of a place at a school?
Academies Academy Trust Schools Adjudicator Academy Trust
Community Schools Local Authority Schools Adjudicator Local Authority
Foundation Schools Governing body Schools Adjudicator Governing body
Voluntary aided schools Governing body Schools Adjudicator Governing body
Voluntary controlled schools Local Authority Schools Adjudicator Local Authority




The first step is check with school’s own admissions code and see if it has obeyed it to the letter and that it hasn’t breached the Government’s simplified School Admission Code which was published last month. It is also advisable to familiarise yourelf with the accompanying School Admission Appeals Code. Even if the decision adhered to the codes then you may still have grounds for appeal on the basis that there are extenuating circumstances for your child attending the school to which you are appealing. For example; your child is dyslexic and the school is the only one in the area with a specialist facility to help dyslexic children or the school has a specialism for which your child has a special aptitude. You are also able to challenge any claim from the school that to admit more pupils would cause overcrowding.

If you do want to appeal but are not certain that you are able to do it on your own then you may want to contact the Advisory Centre for Education Ltd a national charity who will be able to advise you free of charge. It is worth noting however, that success is not guaranteed. According to the Independent, out of the 19,156 appeals lodged last year just 7,289 were successful.

If you do decide to appeal and are unsuccessful don’t worry it’s not the end of the world. If you are trying to get your child into a Grammar School it is possible for them to be added to a waiting list or you can aim for them to sit an entrance exam for a later year group such as Years 8 or 10.

There are also a number of steps that you can take to ease the transition for your son or daughter to the school they will be attending:

  • Disappointment is a part of life but try to see the positives in this setback. Look for good things about the school your child is going to attend: What unique facilities does the school have? Are there trips aboard? Do they have a good reputation for sport or a strong music or drama department etc?
  • Make enquiries to find out if there are any other children in your child’s current class who are going to the same school and try to build links with them.
  • Look around for out of school activities such as drama, scouts, sports clubs etc where your child will be able make new friends who may be going to the same school.
  • Some schools offer year a 6 transition Summer School to enable students to sharpen their skills, meet new friends and familiarise themselves with the school. If they do, take full advantage of everything they are offering.
  • Talk to older children who are already attending your child’s new school and ask them to look out for your child in the first few weeks.
  • Focus on the positives – new friends, new start, new subjects.

Above all – in the words of Monty Python:


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