All schools must send in an arrangement document for 2013, even schools that chose not to consult and are retaining their existing admissions arrangements. There are a number of changes to the Admissions Code that schools will be required to make to their determined arrangements. These changes will not require a consultation, but need to be made to ensure your arrangements are in line with the current code and scheme. Schools will also need to ensure that dates are updated to reference the correct year.
The following areas will require attention. Please check your admission arrangements and make the changes where required:
- LAC criterion must now apply to children that were looked after but are no longer due to an adoption. This change has been introduced in the new Admissions code and is mandatory. For reference Kent's criterion uses this wording: Children in Local Authority Care – a child under the age of 18 years for whom the local authority provides accommodation by agreement with their parents/carers (Section 22 of the Children Act 1989) or who is the subject of a care order under Part IV of the Act. This applies equally to children who immediately after being looked after by the local authority became subject to an adoption, residence or special guardianship order. (As defined by Section 46 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 or Section 8 or 14A of the Children Act 1989)
- Health and Special Access should no longer refer to the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. This should now refer to the Equality Act 2010. Please also ensure that your criterion applies to parents'/guardians physical or mental health needs, not just children. Kent's wording is: Health and Special Access Reasons – Medical, health, social and special access reasons will be applied in accordance with the school’s legal obligations, in particular those under the Equality Act 2010. Priority will be given to those children whose mental or physical impairment means they have a demonstrable and significant need to attend a particular school. Equally this priority will apply to children whose parents’/guardians’ physical or mental health or social needs mean that they have a demonstrable and significant need to attend a particular school. Such claims will need to be supported by written evidence from a suitably qualified medical or other practitioner who can demonstrate a special connection between these needs and the particular school.
- Kent has changed its definition of how distances are calculated. Although the underlying process has remained the same, Kent has improved the wording to better reflect the process. Schools must ensure that any references to "central points" or specific locations in a property are removed. Kent's wording is as follows: Nearness of children's homes to school - we use the distance between the child’s permanent home address and the school, measured in a straight line using Ordnance Survey address point data. Distances are measured from a point defined as within the child’s home to a point defined as within the school as specified by Ordnance Survey. The same address point on the school site is used for everybody.
All admission authorities are required to advise the Secretary of State for Education of their determined arrangements by 15 April each year. Historically the LA has done this on behalf of all schools and academies by sending the Department for Education a link to where we host the admissions arrangements for Kent schools on the KCC website. We are happy to provide a similar service this year, so please email your determined 2013 admissions arrangements before this deadline.
Thank you for your assistance in this matter
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