I have a problem relating to a family matter. What can I do?

Family law matters can be complex. Voluntary advice organisations do not generally advise on this area of law. For specialist advice in the Royal Borough contact:

 

Oliver Fisher Solicitors

www.oliverfisher.co.uk
email:
advice@oliverfisher.co.uk
tel: 020 3219 0145.

Can I see my child’s school file?

Yes. Write to the Chair of Governors and ask for a copy. This should be supplied within 15 school days. There may be a charge. If you look at the records in school, then you will not have to pay. There will be a curricular record and a more general educational record.

Can I take my child on holiday in term time?

The head teacher can authorise absence. Government guidelines say that 10 days is normally the maximum allowed. If you have compelling reasons, explain to the head who will look at the case on its merits. You could take school work with you.

Can my child lose his school place through absence?

If your child is absent continuously for 4 weeks and the school and Local Education Authority cannot find the reason why or the child’s whereabouts, the child can be removed from the school register.

 

Does my child have to go to school?

Parents are responsible in law for arranging a ‘suitable education’ for their child. You can arrange to educate your child at home if you want to. The Local Education Authority will check on the suitability of your planned education.

Can I pick any school for my child?

You need to check the admissions procedures of your chosen school to see if your child will qualify for entrance. Some schools are very selective. Many schools are oversubscribed and there is no guarantee of a place at your chosen school. Admissions policies are available from your Local Edication Authority.

Can I get financial help for my child to get into an independent fee paying school?

Check the website of the school for information on bursaries etc. There are some educational trusts and charities that you can contact and the school will have details of these.

Where can I get schools performance tables?

These are now called Achievement and Attainment tables. They are available on www.dcsf.gov.uk or by phoning the order line on 0800 24 23 22.

Can I withdraw my child from the sex education class?

Parents have a right to withdraw their child from all or part of any sex education provided. However, they cannot withdraw their child from the teaching of biological aspects of human growth and reproduction necessary under national curriculum science.

My child wants to get in to the local school’s sixth form. How do we do this?

Local authorities do not have to co-ordinate admission to sixth form so you will need to contact the school direct and make an application. Young people can make their own application and they have a right of appeal if turned down. Parents have a separate right of application and appeal. Entry to year 12 must not be dependent on previous good attendance or behaviour.

My child has been permanently excluded. Can we apply to a different school?

You do have a right to apply to another school and the right of appeal if you are turned down. If the school is not full but has serious problems, your child may be refused a place but you can appeal this decision. If a child has been permanently excluded twice in 2 years you might be refused a place and then there is no right of appeal.

Seek advice if you want to appeal the exclusion decision.