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Schools: Admissions

Volume 464: debated on Monday 15 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families whether he plans to give schools complete control over non-selective admissions policy. (154528)

Through the Education and Inspections Act we have provided a framework for giving more freedoms to an increased number of schools. This includes more schools, both selective and non-selective, being able to set their own admission policies following local consultation.

However, this is in the context of a robust system of checks and balances. All admission authorities, whether local authorities or school governing bodies, must act in accordance with the mandatory provisions of the new School Admissions Code, which rules out unfair practices and criteria. We have also extended the circumstances in which objections to admission arrangements can be made to the schools adjudicator, whose decisions are binding for up to three years. This will ensure that school admission arrangements provide fair access for every child regardless of their background.