Admissions Code 2012
2.15 Infant class size – Infant classes (those where the majority of children will reach the age of 5, 6 or 7 during the school year) must not contain more than 30 pupils with a single school teacher. Additional children may be admitted under limited exceptional circumstances.
These children will remain an ‘excepted pupil’ for the time they are in an infant class or until the class numbers fall back to the current infant class size limit.
The excepted children are:
a) children admitted outside the normal admissions round with statements of special educational needs specifying a school;
b) looked after children and previously looked after children admitted outside the normal admissions round;
c) children admitted, after initial allocation of places, because of a procedural error made by the admission authority or local authority in the original application process;
d) children admitted after an independent appeals panel upholds an appeal;
e) children who move into the area outside the normal admissions round for whom there is no other available school within reasonable distance;
f) children of UK service personnel admitted outside the normal admissions round;
g) children whose twin or sibling from a multiple birth is admitted otherwise than as an excepted pupil;
h) children with special educational needs who are normally taught in a special educational needs unit45 attached to the school, or registered at a special school, who attend some infant classes within the mainstream school.
Wirral co-ordinated scheme – the Fair Access Protocol
The Wirral Fair Access protocol applies to all mainstream schools. It takes into account the “Guidance on Hard to Place Children” (DfES 2004 and the subsequent Guidance on Fair Access Protocols 2007).
Admissions authorities will be expected to admit the following categories of pupils above the admission number. These are as follows:
• Children in care and previously in care will be placed in the school of their carer’s preference irrespective of the availability of places in the year group. However, the Authority will give careful consideration to the reasons given in support of a preference and monitor the flow of such requests.
These children can be admitted as excepted pupils in infant classes which would otherwise be subject to qualifying measures.
The following vulnerable groups are EXPECTED to be admitted above admission number, but not if this would cause an infant class to exceed 30.
- Children who have recently experienced a traumatic family or domestic event or for whom there are clear medical grounds to support placement in a particular school. A letter in support from a health care professional will be required as evidence.
- Children of refugees and asylum seekers, homeless children and children with unsupportive family backgrounds where a place has not been sought.
- Children without a school place and with a history of serious attendance problems.
- Traveller children.
- Children who are carers
- Children who have been out of education for two months or more
- Children from the criminal justice system or pupil referral units who are being reintegrated into mainstream education