Admissions to Godinton Primary School for September 2017
For children born between 1 September 2012 and 31 August 2013
Those of you with children starting school in the next academic year will now be looking at your local schools, in order to decide which one you would like your child to attend.
We would strongly advise you to visit all of the schools in which you are interested. Whether you know a great deal about education or not, you only need to spend half an hour in a school to know whether the atmosphere and ethos is right for you and your child. There are many very good primary schools which serve the Ashford area. However, they all have their own ethos and their own beliefs about what is important in education, and consequently what they are trying to achieve with their pupils. Our advice is to visit the schools in order to decide which one is right for you.
At Godinton, we place great value on providing a fully rounded education for our pupils. We promote art, music, sport, languages and a very wide range of extra-curricular and enrichment activities in order to develop the character of our pupils. We are the only primary school in Kent to be involved in the EU funded Erasmus exchange programme with other European primary schools. We have extensive systems for tracking our pupils’ progress in English and maths, and we go to great lengths to maximise their progress in these important subjects. However, we do not sacrifice the wider curriculum, the art, music and sport, or our children’s happiness, in order to push our pupils to achieve government targets in the SAT tests.
Finding out more about Godinton Primary School
We quite appreciate that selecting a primary school for your child is one of the most important choices you will make as parents. In order to provide you with sufficient opportunity to really get to know us and to decide whether the ethos of our school matches what you want for your child, we hold an extended open evening for parents in addition to providing guided tours of the school during the day. The two events provide you with very different insights into our school.
The guided tours take place during the course of a normal, working day, so that you can see the school in operation. You will be able to experience the atmosphere within the school and see the interaction between pupils, and between pupils and staff. Being in a school during the day provides you with the most important indicator of whether the school is a happy, productive environment and whether it is right for your child.
However, because all of the teachers and teaching assistants are busy working with the children during our guided tours, you obviously don’t have the opportunity to talk to them. You will be able to question the Headteacher and Deputy Headteacher as much as you wish, as they conduct our tours. However, we don’t think parents should select a school based largely on what they are told by senior members of staff. Hence, we also hold our open evening.
The open evening provides you with an extended opportunity to talk to a wide range of the adults who work at our school, and to ask each and every question to which you need an answer. You will be able to come along to the school hall where there will be a large number of displays on various aspects of life at Godinton Primary. Members of staff will be on hand to explain the philosophy behind our teaching of various curriculum subjects, and members of the school’s senior management team and governing body will also be available to talk through any questions or issues which you may have. Children from our current Year 6 will be present and you will be able to talk to them about life in the school. You will also be able to talk to parents whose own children have recently started at our school, to ask them about their experiences and impressions. In addition, there will be representatives from the school’s breakfast club and after school club. Most importantly you will be able to visit the Reception classes and to talk with the teachers and teaching assistants who work in this year group.
You can come along at any time during the evening and you are welcome to stay for 10 minutes or for the whole hour and a half. The school caterers will provide refreshments during the evening. Please feel free to bring your children along should you so wish.
This year’s open evening is on Monday, November 21st, from 5.30-7pm.
The school tours will take place in the weeks following the open evening. We would love to show parents around individually, but because of the numbers involved, this just isn’t possible. Consequently, the tours are conducted for up to a dozen sets of parents at a time. The tour begins with a short presentation from the Headteacher, Mr Jim Holditch, during which he will tell you about life at Godinton. Then he and Miss Jill Talbot, the school’s Deputy Headteacher, will split the group and take you around the school so that you can see it in operation. You can bring younger children and pushchairs if you need to, although it is simpler getting into and out of the classrooms if we don’t have too many buggies! Once we have visited the school, Mr Holditch will then outline the application process and answer any further questions which arise.
The tour dates for 2016/17 are:
Tuesday 22nd, Wednesday 23rd, Thursday 24th and Friday 25th November, all at 9.15am, and
Monday 28th, Tuesday 29th and Wednesday 30th November, all at 1.30pm.
Parents who have registered their interest in Godinton Primary will be sent an admissions pack which includes a booking form for the tours. If, after reading our admissions pack, you decide that you do wish to tour the school, you simply complete the relevant form, indicate which date you would like to attend, and send it back to us. For those parents who have not already done so, you can register your interest in Godinton School by telephoning the school office on 01233 621616. Alternatively, you can also book a place on the tours when attending our open evening, or by telephoning or e mailing the school office.
If you find that the tour dates do not suit you, please give us a call and we will arrange another mutually convenient time for you to see the school.
Godinton Primary School – Admission Criteria
Schools are only allowed to admit a certain number of pupils into each year group. At Godinton Primary, this number is 60. If more than 60 pupils wish to join our Reception intake, we have to apply KCC agreed admission criteria to decide which children receive places and which do not.
The current criteria, which are applied in priority order, are as follows:
Looked After Children – Children who are in Local Authority Care or a child who was previously looked after but immediately after being looked after became subject to an adoption, resident or special guardianship order.
Sibling Link – Those children who have a brother or sister already at the school. To qualify for this criterion, the brother or sister must still be attending the school when the younger sibling starts. There is no sibling link if the brother or sister is in Year 6 when you apply, and will subsequently have left the school when the younger sibling joins. In addition, the family must still live at the same address as when the brother/sister was first admitted, or if they have subsequently moved, they must now live within 2 miles of the school (straight line distance) or have moved nearer to the school from where they were living previously. If the family has moved more than 2 miles from the school since the sibling was admitted, the sibling link is deemed to have been broken. For further details, please see page 18 of the KCC admissions booklet which is available online.
Health and Special Access Reasons – This applies to children whose health or physical impairment means they have to go to a particular school because he/she can only move easily around certain kinds of building. A medical practitioner must provide written evidence to support your request. The KCC admissions booklet also provides details with regard to parental health issues and how this impacts on applying for a school place.
Staff children – Where admission of the child is required to enable the retention of a member of staff to a key position, provided the staff member has been employed at Godinton Primary School for two or more years at the time at which the application for admission is made; and/or where admission of the child is required to allow recruitment of the member of staff to a post for which there is a demonstrable skill shortage.
Once the other criteria have been taken into consideration, the children are offered places according to who lives closest to the school. The distance is measured by Kent County Council, using a computer system which measures the straight line distance between a set point on the school site and the child’s house.
The admissions policy is one of those which you can view in the policies section of this website, through the ‘About Us’ tab.
In order to gain a place at our school, the parents of reception aged children are required to complete a Reception Common Admissions Form (RCAF). Parents can either do this online, at www.kent.gov.uk/ola, from November until the closing date early in January, or those who do not have access to the internet can request a paper copy of the application form from the school. The paper copy of the RCAF should be completed and returned to the school or the LEA Admissions Team by the closing date in January. Only one application must be submitted per child, either online or paper but not both.
The parents of older children who are moving into the area and who wish their child to attend our school will need to complete Kent County Council’s ‘In Year Common Application Form’ (IYCAF) . A paper copy of this is available from the school office or via firstname.lastname@example.org. and parents need to return it to the school once completed.
Listed below are the furthest distances from which we have admitted children into our Reception classes over the past few years. These distances relate to children who were new entrants and didn’t have a sibling already attending the school. Please realise that this distance will vary from year to year, as the birth rate and the number of siblings we admit each year varies. For example, in 2011 the distance reduced considerably because we took in an exceptionally high number of siblings. Conversely, in 2012 Repton Manor Primary opened, followed by Goat Lees Primary in 2013, and a number of other local schools were also provided with mobile classrooms in order to increase their intake. This greatly increased local provision meant that in 2014 our catchment distance increased. However, in 2015 it returned to a more normal, expected figure.
I would strongly suggest that you use the historical catchment distances as only the loosest of guides in determining whether you might be able to secure a place at a given school.
In 2010, the last child to be admitted into reception without having a sibling already at the school, lived 1.6755 miles from the school.
In 2011, it was 0.66 miles.
In 2012, it was 1.3243 miles.
In 2013 – 1.3243 miles
In 2014 – 2.7843 miles
In 2015 – 1.1776 miles
Please remember, that these are direct line distances, between your house, which must be the main residence of the child, and a datum point within the school.
Parents should also note that the following points DO NOT form part of the school’s admissions criteria:
- How long your child’s name has been registered at a school.
- If your child attends the nursery on our school site
- If your child attends a playschool or pre-school nearby
- Any previous association you or your extended family may have had with the school either by attending it or participating with any of the school’s activities
- How long you may have lived in the area or a parent’s intention of moving into the area in the future.
If your child is due to start primary, infant or junior school in 2017 you can appeal between 18 April and 17 May 2017 to guarantee that your appeal will be heard by 18 July 2017. For applications made in the normal admission round, appeals must be heard within 40 school days of the deadline for lodging appeals. For late applications, appeals should be heard within 40 schools days from the deadline for lodging appeals where possible, or within 30 schools days of the appeals being lodged.
Further information about the process of applying for a place at a primary school, and full details of what each of the criteria mean, can be found on the Kent County Council website:
The KCC admission booklet for Ashford can be found in the right hand menu on the KCC website.
Alternatively please contact the school if you have any specific queries or concerns.