Admissions Policy, September 2014
St John Fisher Catholic Comprehensive School (hereafter known as “the School”) strives for a school community built on the teachings of the Catholic Church as encapsulated in the schools ethos and mission statement. The schools admission policy, as such, provides for entry for all students, with preference given to those who adhere to the Catholic faith.
- Admissions to the school are made by the school governing body
- Admission to the school is based on the principle of non-selection
- The school caters for children of all abilities, including those with special educational needs
- Those students with statements of special educational needs, who name the school as an option will be offered places first
- The school’s planned admission number is 180
2. Annual Year 7 Intake
- Applications will be dealt with in accordance with the Medway co-ordinated secondary admission scheme. (Full details will be set out in the Medway secondary admissions booklet which will be given to parents of year 6 by primary schools).
- Parents who wish to apply for admission to the School must complete the Medway common application form (CAF) and return it to their child’s primary school by the required date.
- In addition to completing the CAF, parents must send/take a copy of the School’s supplementary form with a copy of their child’s baptismal certificate, if applicable, to the School by the same date.
- Ministers of Religion should be asked to fill in the relevant part of the form to confirm the applicant’s religious commitment, if applicable.
- Offers of places will be posted to parents by the LA, on behalf of the governing body.
- A waiting list will operate for year 7 according to the co-ordinated scheme.
Parents whose applications for places are unsuccessful may appeal to an Independent Appeal Panel set up in accordance with sections 88 and 94 of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998. Appeals must be made in writing and must set out the reasons on which the appeal is made. Appeals should be made to the Admissions Appeal Clerk at the school address. Parents/Carers have the right to make oral representations to the Appeal Panel.
4. Admission into Years 8-11 and Year 7 after the start of the Academic Year
- All applications for admission for students in year 8 to 11 and for year 7 after the start of the academic year will be referred to the LA and dealt with according to the co-ordinated scheme.
- Parents of children who have not been offered a place at the school may ask for their child’s name to be placed on a waiting list. The waiting list will be operated using the same admissions criteria listed above. Placing a child’s name on the waiting list does not guarantee that a place will become available. This does not prevent parents from exercising their right to appeal against the decision not to offer a place.
Having consulted with the Local Authority, the Diocese and other admission authorities, the Governors intend to admit, in September 2014, up to 180 pupils without reference to ability or aptitude.
Where the number of applications exceeds (n) the Governors will offer places using the following criteria in the order stated:-
- Looked after Catholic children or looked after children in the care of Catholic families and previously looked after Catholic children who have been adopted or who have become the subject of a residence or guardianship order.
- Catholic children, a baptismal certificate or evidence of reception into the Catholic Church must accompany the supplementary information form. . See note a.
- Children enrolled in the catechumenate. Evidence of enrolment in the catechumenate will be required.
- Other looked after children and other previously looked after children who have been adopted or who have become the subject of a residence or guardianship order.
- Non Catholic children who have attended a Catholic primary partner school, that is:
- English Martyrs’, Strood
- St Augustine of Canterbury, Rainham
- St Benedict’s, Lordswood
- St Edward’s, Sheppey
- St Mary’s, Gillingham
- St Michael’s, Chatham
- St Peter’s, Sittingbourne
- St Thomas More, Walderslade
- St Thomas of Canterbury, Rainham
- St William of Perth, Rochester.
- Children of families who are members of other Christian denominations that are part of Churches Together in England. Evidence of Baptism (or dedication) provided by a priest or minister of a designated place of worship will be required.
- Children who are members of other faiths. Evidence of membership of the faith provided by a priest, minister or religious leader of a designated place of worship will be required.
- Any other children.
The following order of priorities will be applied when applications within any of the above categories exceed the places available and it is necessary to decide between applications.
- A brother or sister on the school roll at the time of admission. Evidence of the relationship may be required. See note b.
- Social, pastoral and medical needs which make the school particularly suitable for the child in question. Strong and relevant evidence must be provided by an appropriate professional authority (eg qualified medical practitioner, education welfare officer, social worker or priest).
- Proximity to the School from the child's home address. See note c.
- Catholics include members of the Ordinariate and the Latin and Oriental Rite Churches that are in union with the Bishop of Rome. Reference to other Christian denominations refers to denominations that are full members of Churches Together in England.
- ;A “brother or sister” means children who live as brother and sister including natural brothers or sisters, adopted siblings, stepbrothers or sisters and foster brothers or sisters.; It would not include other relatives eg cousins.
- ;Home refers to the permanent home address at which the child lives for the majority of his/her time and with the parent who is in receipt of child benefit.; The distance calculated is the shortest available safe walking route known to the geographical information home/distance software used by Medway Student Services (Admissions). This graphical information software may not know all footpaths that are in existence and certain new roads may not be known. Where a footpath or new road is not known to the software an alternative route will be used. Where a child’s home is situated on a new road the distance calculation will begin from the nearest available known road plotted in the software. New developments may be subject to this. In certain cases it may not be possible to calculate a distance where the entire route is deemed as a safe walking route. In these circumstances the distance calculated is used purely to prioritise an application for admission. There is no expectation that the walk should be taken.
- ;Looked after children are those in the care of a public authority and are in public care.; Applications made under this criterion must be accompanied by details of circumstance and professionally supported evidence (eg from an appropriate social worker).
Parents whose applications for places are unsuccessful may appeal to an Independent Appeal Panel set up in accordance with section 85(3) of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998. Appeals must be made in writing and must set out the reasons on which the appeal is made. Appeals should be made to the Admissions Appeal Clerk at the school address. Parents/Carers have the right to make oral representations to the Appeal Panel.
Parents of children who have not been offered a place at the school may ask for their child’s name to be placed on a waiting list. The waiting list, which will be maintained until........., will be operated using the same admissions criteria listed above. Placing a child’s name on the waiting list does not guarantee that a place will become available. This does not prevent parents from exercising their right to appeal against the decision not to offer a place. It is possible that when a child is directed under the local authority’s fair access protocol they will take precedence over those children already on the list.
Fair Access Protocol
The school participates in the local authority’s Fair Access Protocol to allocate places to vulnerable and other children in accordance with the School Admission Code 2012. Admitting pupils under the protocol may require the school to admit above the planned admission number for the relevant year group.
6. Sixth Form
- Planned admission to the Sixth Form is 185. All pupils will be expected to support fully the distinctive Catholic Ethos of the sixth form.
- For Advanced, Advanced-Subsidiary and Advanced Vocational Certificate of Education courses, the minimum entry requirement is five A* to C grades at GCSE. Some courses will require a student to have gained at least a ‘B’ grade in that subject before study at A-level can commence, e.g. Physics and Chemistry.
- There are no minimum entry requirements for Level Two courses.
- The Governing Body is the Admissions Authority. The Head of Sixth Form will advise but the final discretion is with the governors.
- All courses are subject to availability and timetabling constraints.
"Students and their parents receive clear information, advice and guidance to help them with their choice of curriculum pathway."
Ofsted March 2013