Parents unite over admission
FRUSTRATED parents who believe the council has not given their children a fair chance to be educated at the school of their choice have formed a group. Education for Our Children (EFOC) is made up of mums and dads from across the borough but was started b
FRUSTRATED parents who believe the council has not given their children a fair chance to be educated at the school of their choice have formed a group.
Education for Our Children (EFOC) is made up of mums and dads from across the borough but was started by Angela Moore from the Thames View Estate, Barking.
Two weeks ago the POST featured Angela and her 11-year-old daughter Kayleigh, in a story about their secondary school admissions nightmare.
Kayleigh was told she lived too far away from Eastbury to attend and that there were no places left at Jo Richardson - but was then offered distant Dagenham Park.
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Angela said: "It's about our children's right to be educated at a local school.
"Somewhere within safe walking distance or that doesn't require an hour bus journey there and back."
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Jo Richardson was originally built so that the primary school pupils from Thames View Estate would have a local secondary school.
It actually falls within the boundary of Thames ward.
But over the years fewer and fewer children from Thames View have been accepted there.
Now other parents as well as Angela are demanding answers from the council about why their children seem to have been forgotten and are forced to go to a school miles away from their homes.
Carol Wren is another worried mum who has joined EFOC after her daughter Allison was denied a place at Eastbury School.
The family appealed the decision on the grounds that Allison was bullied at two primary schools and eventually had to be moved to Gascoigne Primary.
She suffers from severe asthma, made worse by the car fumes from the A13, and her parents wanted Allison to be at a school where they could reach her quickly.
Carol said: "Both of my other children go to Eastbury. I think Allison will be safer there but the council does not seem to care.
"They didn't even take her medical condition into account."
Angela and several other parents met with Margaret Hodge MP for Barking on Wednesday May 20 at the Town Hall to discuss the school admissions problem.
A council spokesman said: "The allocation of secondary school places is made based on parental preference and distance.
"Jo Richardson Community School is an extremely popular school and this year more than 1,100 young people applied for 240 places.
"Consequently we were only able to offer a place to children living within 1.787km of the school.
"The council has met with parents from Thames View and is looking at the concerns they have raised."
If you would like to contact Angela email firstname.lastname@example.org.