The outgoing chief schools adjudicator for England has laid bare her concerns about an increasingly fragmented school admissions system that too often leaves parents in the dark and fails to serve children well.
Elizabeth Passmore’s final annual report, covering 2014-15, unveils a host of problems in a landscape where a large proportion of schools have acquired academy status and run their own admissions. They include:
- Schools spending more public money on lawyers to defend admissions policies.
- A 53 per cent rise in offers being withdrawn owing to fraudulent applications by parents.
- Expensive banding systems used to take bright pupils at the expense of local children.
- Academy admissions arrangements that are unpublished or difficult to find.