Now that “Open Evening Season” is well underway and many parents are seeking answers to their questions, I would like to address the one Frequently Asked Question that we have been asked more than any other over the last few months. This question has been mainly asked by parents of children without a sibling at EDA and the question is this (or some very similar variation):
“What are the chances of my child getting into EDA?”
Even though this is such an important question to so many parents in the community, it is, unfortunately a question that I cannot give a straightforward answer to. This is due to the fact that there are many complicated factors involved in the application process. The only thing that I can do is share the following 10 facts, together with some advice (as a parent myself who has been through this process) which will hopefully help you decide whether to apply for EDA or not:
- EDA has a PAN of 185 for our Year 7 cohort.
- We are completely non-selective (We do not select on the basis or ability, faith or any other criteria.)
- We do not have a catchment area and so pupils can apply from anywhere.
- Up to our PAN of 185, every single pupil who puts EDA as first choice gets in, no questions asked.
- The majority of pupils that put EDA as first choice are successful with their application.
- If we receive a small number of first-choice applications above PAN , we will always consider going above PAN
in order to meet demand and remove the need for appeals.
- If we have so many first-choice applications that we can’t apply No.6. then we have to apply the oversubscription
criteria from Section 3 of our Admissions Policy. The Local Authority then monitor things very closely.
- Every pupil who is unsuccessful in their application has a right to appeal.
- Every year, a number of students are admitted to EDA via the appeals route.
- Every year, we manage to work down our waiting list and admit Year 7 students during the Academic year when
places become available (For reasons such as Year 7 students not turning up in September or moving out of the
area later in the year.)
Despite the 10 facts above, there are no guarantees. And the harsh reality is, every year, there are students who are disappointed because they are ultimately unsuccessful with their application and/or appeal. However, it is impossible to second-guess the likelihood of an application being successful or not because of the following factors which have a huge bearing on application outcomes:- The number of first-choice applications we receive.
- The number of parents who want their children to attend the same school as siblings.
- How many applications we receive from pupils who are officially Looked After or who have an EHCP.
- The physical distance from EDA of applicants.
- How many parents are determined to go to appeal.
Therefore, in light of the complexities of the process, the only fair advice I can give to you is to quite simply trust the process and apply for the school which continues to resonate with you when you reflect on the following two questions:
1.Which school will best enable my child to flourish, thrive, succeed and develop into the very best version of ‘them’ that they can be, by the time that they leave
2.Which school is most likely, on a day-to-day basis, to live up to the claims that were made – and the expectations that were laid out – in their Open Evening presentations and information.
These two questions helped me make the right choice for my children and I hope you find them useful too.
Good luck in with your decision-making and if EDA is right for your child, then I look forward to meeting you at some point in the future!