School Admission Arrangements and Consultation
The Local Authority as the admissions authority for all community and voluntary controlled schools is responsible for admissions arrangements and their determination. Other schools who are their own admission authorities must follow regulations
as laid out in the Schools Admission Code (2021).
Schools who are their Own Admission Authorities:
- Academies/Free schools
- Voluntary-aided school
- Trust/Foundation schools
When changes are proposed to admission arrangements, all admission authorities must consult on their admission arrangements (including any supplementary information form) that will apply for admission applications the following school year. Where the admission
arrangements have not changed from the previous year there is no requirement to consult, subject to the requirement that admission authorities
must consult on their admission arrangements at least once every 7 years, even if there have been no changes during that period.
Consultation must last for a minimum of 6 weeks and must
take place between 1 October and 31 January in the determination year.
Admission authorities must consult with:
a) parents of children between the ages of two and eighteen;
b) other persons in the relevant area who in the opinion of the admission authority have an interest in the proposed admissions;
c) all other admission authorities within the relevant area (except that primary schools need not consult secondary schools);
d) whichever of the governing body and the local authority is not the admission authority;
e) any adjoining neighbouring local authorities where the admission authority is the local authority; and
f) in the case of schools designated with a religious character, the body or person representing the religion or religious denomination
For the duration of the consultation period, the admission authority must publish a copy of their full proposed admission arrangements (including the proposed PAN) on the school's website or its own website (in the case of a local authority)
together with details of where comments may be sent and the areas on which comments are not sought. Admission authorities must also send, upon request, a copy of the proposed admission arrangements to any of the persons or bodies above inviting
comment. Failure to consult effectively may be grounds for subsequent complaints and appeals.
Determination – All admission authorities must
determine (i.e. formally agree) their admission arrangements, including their PAN, every year, even if they have not changed from previous years and a consultation has not been required. Admission authorities must determine admission arrangements for entry by
28 February in the determination year.
Once admission authorities have determined their admission arrangements, they
must notify the appropriate bodies and must publish a copy of the determined arrangements on the school website or their own website (in the case of a local authority) by 15 March in the determination year and continue displaying them
for the whole offer year (the school year in which offers for places are made). Admission Authorities
must also send a copy of their full, determined arrangements to the local authority as soon as possible by 15 March in the determination year. Admission authorities for school designated with a religious character
must also send a copy of their arrangements to the body or person representing their religion or religious denomination.
Where an admission authority has determined a PAN that is higher than in previous years, they must notify the local authority that they have done so and make specific reference to the change on their website
Local authorities must publish on their website the proposed admission arrangements for any new school or Academy which is intended to open in their area within the determination year, details of where the determined arrangements for all
schools, including Academies, can be viewed, and information on how to refer objections to the Schools Adjudicator. Local authorities
must publish these details by 15 March in the determination year
Following determination of arrangements, any objections to those arrangements
must be made to the Schools Adjudicator by 15 May in the determination year.
Admission Authorities that are not the local authority must provide all the information that the local authority needs to compile the composite prospectus no later than 8 August.