William Eichler 19 July 2023

London boroughs call for more powers to oversee in-year school admissions

London boroughs call for more powers to oversee in-year school admissions  image
Image: James Jiao / Shutterstock.com.

Pupils who change schools during term-time run the risk of missing out on education because of a complex in-year admissions system, London boroughs have warned.

A new report by London Councils found that a considerable number of families who apply for a school place for their children through the in-year admissions system face ‘unnecessary delays’.

It said these delays are due to the time taken for referrals to Fair Access Protocols and – in more challenging cases – the Secretary of State for Education.

These delays can sometimes lead to pupils missing out on education and can lead to safeguarding concerns.

London Councils called for greater powers for local authorities to have oversight of all in year admissions.

Cllr Ian Edwards, London Councils Executive Member for Schools and Young Children, said: ‘London Councils shares the government’s commitment to ensure all children, especially the most vulnerable in our society, are safe and have access to an excellent education. But boroughs need greater powers to bring about the necessary changes to create a system that is faster, fairer and more simple to navigate.

‘Not only is it unacceptable that some pupils are missing out on their education as a result of the complexities of this system, but it also poses unnecessary safeguarding risks as children missing education are less likely to have contact with statutory agencies. This means there is potential for them to fall off the radar if a council is not informed that a pupil has been denied a place via the in-year admissions process.’

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