Report to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator 2020

Local Authority Report to The Schools Adjudicator from Trafford Local Authority to be provided by 30 June 2020

Report Cleared by:

Name Jill McGregor

Title Corporate Director, Children’s Services

Telephone number 0161 912 2365

Email: jill.mcgregor@trafford.gov.uk

Date submitted: 30 June 2020

By: Marilyn Golding

Title: School Admissions Service manager

Telephone number: 0161 912 1853

Email: marilyn.golding@live.co.uk

www.gov.uk/government/organisations/office-of-the-schools-adjudicator

Please email your completed report to: osa.team@schoolsadjudicator.gov.uk by 30 June 2020 and earlier if possible

Contents

Section 1 - Normal point of admission. 4

A. Co-ordination. 4

B. Looked after and previously looked after children. 4

C. Special educational needs and disabilities. 5

Section 2 - In-year admissions. 5

A. Co-ordination of in-year admissions. 5

B. Looked after children and previously looked after children. 6

C. Children with special educational needs and/or disabilities. 6

D. Fair access protocol 7

E. General comments on in-year dmissions.8

Section 3 - Other matters. 8

Section 4 - Feedback. 8

Introduction and guidance on completing the report – Revised April 2020

  1. Section 88P of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 (the Act) requires every local authority to make an annual report to the adjudicator. The Chief Adjudicator then includes a summary of these reports in her annual report to the Secretary for State for Education. The School Admissions Code (the Code) sets out the requirements for reports by local authorities in paragraph 6. Paragraph 3.23 specifies what must be included as a minimum in the report to the adjudicator and makes provision for the local authority to include any other matters. This is a revised template issued in the light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
  1. This template requests local authorities only for:

a) information about how admission arrangements in the area of the local authority serve the interests of looked after children and previously looked after children, children with disabilities and children with special educational needs, including any details of where problems have arisen;

b) an assessment of the effectiveness of Fair Access Protocols and co-ordination in their area, including how many children were admitted to each school under them.

  1. We would be grateful if local authorities would follow the approach used in statutory provisions and in the Department for Education Statistical First Release[1]and the Education Middle School (England) Regulations 2002[2].
  1. Local authorities are, of course, free to comment on any other matters not specifically addressed in this template if they wish to do so under section 3. The views expressed by local authorities in previous years also remain a matter of public record.
  1. The report must be returned to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator by 30 June 2020.

Information requested

Section 1 - Normal point of admission

A. Co-ordination

  1. How well did co-ordination of the main admissions round work?

Not well

A large number of small problems or a major problem

Well with few small problems

Very well

Reception

     

!

Year 7

     

!

Other relevant years of entry

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

  1. Please give examples to illustrate your answer if you wish:

B. Looked after and previously looked after children

  1. How well does the admissions system in your local authority area serve the interests of looked after children at normal points of admission?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☐Well ☒Very well ☐Not applicable[3]

  1. How well do the admissions systems in other local authority areas serve the interests of children looked after by your local authority at normal points of admission?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☐Well ☒Very well ☐Not applicable3

  1. How well does your admissions system serve the interests of children who are looked after by other local authorities but educated in your area at normal points of admission?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☐Well ☒Very well ☐Not applicable3

  1. How well does the admissions system in your local authority area serve the interests of previously looked after children at normal points of admission?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☐Well ☒Very well ☐Not applicable3

  1. Priority in admission arrangements for 2021 for adopted children previously in care abroad. Please comment on the use of a priority in admission arrangements for a child adopted who was previously in care abroad if you wish.

No applications were received

  1. If you wish to please give any examples of good or poor practice or difficulties which exemplify your answers about the admission to schools of looked after and previously looked after children at the normal points of admission:

C. Special educational needs and disabilities

  1. Please provide any comments you wish to make on the admission of children with special educational needs and/or disabilities at the normal points of admission:
Section 2 - In-year[4]admissions

A. Co-ordination of in-year admissions

Please provide any comments on the co-ordination of in year admissions if you wish.

B. Looked after children and previously looked after children

i. How well does the in-year admissions system serve children who are looked after by your local authority and who are being educated in your area?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Not applicable[5]

ii. How well do the in-year admission systems in other local authority areas serve the interests of your looked after children?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Not applicable[6]

iii. How well does your in-year admissions system serve the interests of children who are looked after by other local authorities but educated in your area?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Not applicable6

iv. How well does your in-year admissions system serve the interests of previously looked after children?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Not applicable6

  1. If you wish please give examples of any good or poor practice or difficulties which support or exemplify your answers about in-year admissions forlooked after and previously looked after children:

C. Children with special educational needs and/or disabilities

i. How well served are children with special educational needs and/or disabilities who have an education health and care plan that names a school when they need to be admitted in-year?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☐Well ☒Very well ☐ Not applicable6

ii. How well served are children with special educational needs and/or disabilities who do not have an education health and care plan when they need to be admitted in-year?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Don’t know

iii. Please give examples of good or poor practice or difficulties which support or exemplify your answers about in-year admissions for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities:

Since information on special educational needs and/or disabilities cannot be requested before a place is allocated, places are allocated on the basis of the oversubscription criteria. As a result these needs may not identified until the child presents at a school or a Common Transfer File is received where the child was previously educated elsewhere in England.

Trafford’s schools are extremely popular and most are oversubscribed in every year group. As a result most in year applications are initially refused. However, outside the restrictions of Infant Class Size Appeals, Trafford’s appeals process is effective and Independent Appeal Panels always consider the circumstances of children and their families. Finally, Trafford’s Fair access Process is used to ensure that all in year applicants are allocated a place at a suitable school and these cases are usually resolved in less time than the usual appeal process would take.

iv. If you wish please provide any comments about in-year admissions in respect of other children:

D. Fair access protocol

  1. Has your fair access protocol been agreed[7]with the majority of state-funded mainstream schools in your area?

☒Yes for primary

☒Yes for secondary

  1. If you have not been able to tick both boxes above, please explain why:
  1. How many children were admitted to schools in your area under the fair access protocol between 1 April 2019 and 31 March 2020?

Type of school

Number of children admitted

Primary aged children

Secondary aged children

Community and voluntary controlled

18

*

Foundation, voluntary aided and academies

10

32

Total

28

32

  1. How well do you consider hard to place children are served by the fair access protocol in your area?

☐Not at all ☐Not well ☒Well ☐Very well ☐Not applicable[8]

  1. Please make any relevant comment on the protocol not covered above if you wish.

In the primary sector the incidence of hard to place children is rare and no cases have been considered in this academic year to date. However, in such cases the primary fair access protocol, through Trafford’s Pupil Placement Panel, works well and in the best interest of the individual child. The majority of primary placements are made for children moving into the area where there are no suitable schools within a reasonable distance.

In the secondary sector, where the incidence is higher, Officers report that there is some room for improvement when implementing the decisions made through the Protocol, and that the processes are constantly under review.

*Trafford has only 1 community secondary school

E. Any other comments on the admission of children in-year not previously raised if you wish.

Section 3 - Other matters

Are there any other matters that the local authority would like to raise that have not been covered by the questions above?

None

Section 4 - Feedback

We would be grateful if you could provide any feedback on completing this report to inform our practice for 2021.

 

Thank you for completing this template.

Please return to Lisa Short at OSA.Team@schoolsadjudicator.gov.uk by 30 June 2020



[1]Department for Education Statistical First Release

[2]The Education Middle School (England) Regulations 2002

[3]‘Not applicable’ will only be appropriate if there are no children falling within this definition.

[4]By in-year we mean admission at the start of any school year which is not a normal point of entry for the school concerned (for example at the beginning of Year 2 for a five to eleven primary school) and admission during the course of any school year after the end of the statutory waiting list period (ie 31 December) in normal years of admission.

[5]‘Not applicable’ will only be appropriate if there are no children falling within this definition.

[6]‘Not applicable’ will only be appropriate if there are no children falling within this definition.

[7]An existing protocol remains binding on all schools up until the point at which a new one is adopted.

[8]‘Not applicable’ would mean that there were no hard to place children for which the protocol was required.