West London Free School

West London Free School

Year 7 Admissions

Admissions consultation

The West London Free School Academy Trust is currently consulting on the admissions arrangements for the school for 18/19. You can read a letter about the consultation and learn how to respond here and you can see the draft arrangements here.

Admissions policy

There are 120 Year 7 places available at the school each year. Ten per cent of these are reserved for children with musical aptitude and, in accordance with the School Admissions Code, priority is given to children with statements of special educational need and children in care. We also have a sibling policy that applies to siblings of children at the WLFS Secondary as well as the WLFS Primary, provided they were admitted to the Primary Schools between 1st September 2013 and 31st July 2016. We want to ensure that the school serves local families and, after we've allocated places to music scholars, statemented children, siblings, etc, we allocate 50% of the remaining places on the basis of proximity. The remaining places are awarded by lottery, with a majority being allocated to those who live within a one-mile radius of the school and a smaller number to those within a three-mile radius.

The admission arrangements of the West London Free School fully comply with the School Admissions Code and Admissions Law. The school is open to anyone and is non-selective. The admissions policy we used  for September 2017 can be seen here. Applications for a Year 7 place in September 2017 were  made from 1st September 2016 until the closing date 31st October 2016. For further information regarding musical places, please see the Music Aptitude page.

Application process

The application deadline for Year 7 places in 2017 was  31st October 2016. Applicants will be notified whether they are successful at the beginning of March 2017. Applications can be made via your local council using the Common Application Form or online by clicking here.

Applications received after the closing date of 31st October 2016 but before midday on 15th December 2016 were  only be treated as on-time applications in exceptional circumstances and entirely at the discretion of the Chair of Governors and the Headteacher acting together on behalf of the school's governing body. To be treated as on-time applications, they needed to be accompanied by written evidence of exceptional medical, pastoral or compassionate grounds for doing so. Otherwise they would have been  treated like late applications and will be added to the Waiting List after 31st August 2017. Applications received after midday on 15th December 2016 and before midnight on 31st December 2016 will also be added to the Waiting List after 31st August 2017 and be considered for any vacancies occurring during the period 1st September to 31st December 2017.

Those applicants who applied on time (and those applicants treated as such) but aren't offered places at the beginning of March 2017 will initially be placed on our Reserve List. (The order of the Reserve List is determined in accordance with the order determined by the over-subscription criteria.) Any places not taken up by those we've initially made offers to at the beginning of March will then be offered to applicants on the Reserve List in a second wave of offers... and so on. This process continues until all the places are filled. Only if all the places haven't been filled by 31st August 2017 will we make offers to applicants on our Waiting List. For more details on the admissions criteria applied to those on the Reserve List and the Waiting List, see our admissions policy.

If the West London Free School is oversubscribed, its published admissions criteria are used to decide the order in which applicants will be offered places. If you have not been offered a place and wish to appeal, please complete this form

The Common Application Form

Some parents who think they'll only be eligible for a lottery place at our school, not a proximity place or a musical place, have asked whether they should place us first on the Common Application Form. After all, if their chances of getting in are quite small, won't they be "wasting" their first preference by ranking us first? Wouldn't they be better off ranking a school they have a higher chance of getting in to first?

This is based on a misunderstanding of how the pan-London admissions process works. The Pan-London Admissions Board does not vary the amount of weight it gives to a parent's application to a particular school depending on where that parent has ranked the school on the Form. Rather, it takes all the schools you've named on your Form, regardless of where you've ranked them, and applies the over-subscription criteria of those schools. Once it has worked out which of the schools on your Form you qualify for a place at, then (and only then) does it look at your order of preferences. You'll then be offered a place at the school you've ranked highest amongst the schools you qualify for a place at.

For example, suppose you place the West London Free School first and another school second. If your child doesn't qualify for a place at our school – because he or she is unsuccessful in the lottery, for instance – but does qualify for a place at your second choice, you'll be offered a place there. Your child won't be discriminated against in the admissions process because you've placed that school second rather than first. Some people imagine the way the admissions process works is that the Board initially applies a school's over-subscription criteria to just those applicants who've placed that school first on the Form and only after the successful applicants have turned down their offers do they then apply the school's oversubscription criteria to those who've ranked it second. But that isn't how it works. The Board applies each school's over-subscription criteria to all those who've named that school on their Forms, regardless of its ordinal position on the Forms.

In the above scenario, the only risk you're taking by placing us first and the other school second is that if you qualify for a place at both of our schools you'll only be offered a place at our school as the higher preference. As explained, the Board takes all those schools on your Form you qualify for a place at and then offers you a place at whichever one of those schools you've ranked highest on the Form. You'll only be offered one place – you won't be informed of all those schools you've qualified for a place at and be asked to choose between them.

The bottom line is that if the West London Free School is your first preference you should put us first. If another school is your first preference, put that school first. You shouldn't base your decision of where to rank us on your assessment of your chances of qualifying for a place at our school since that consideration is irrelevant

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