Primary pupils 'upset by unfair admissions'

29th November 2002 at 00:00
A new study says children just want a good local school they can attend with their friends, report Jon Slater and Adi Bloom

Children suffer serious distress in their final year at primary school because of the market-driven approach to admissions adopted by successive governments, according to a report published this week.

Children are not given enough information about secondary schools, it says, and complex admissions arrangements leave them feeling left out of a process which will have a serious impact on their futures.

Pupils believe admissions arrangements are unfair and feel that the process of application to and rejection from up to eight different schools drives a wedge between themselves and their classmates, says the Office of the Children's Rights Commissioner for London.

The office, which carried out the research, is funded by the National Lottery and children's charities.

The report's authors say the Government has made a mistake in creating many different types of secondaries, such as specialist and city technology colleges. What children want is a good local school that they can attend with their friends.

Changing Schools - the impact of the schools admissions process on children looked at the views of 140 Year 6 pupils and their teachers in four primary schools in London.

It found that children were suspicious of glossy brochures and wanted to be able to visit secondary schools during a normal school day so they could get a true picture of what it was like.

Pupils should also be able to get independent advice on schools and their admissions arrangements from an equivalent of a careers advisor, said Judy Templeton, one of the authors of the report.

"Education is about children's lives. They should be at the heart of the decision-making process. Instead the process of gaining a place at a secondary school is one of complete bewilderment."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now