94.2 per cent of York children get a place at their first choice of primary school

Primary school admission figures for entry in September 2018 reveal that 94.2 per cent of York children having been given their first preference.

City of York Council’s figures show that 99.4 per cent of pupils got one of their first three preferences. The percentage of children achieving their first preference has increased by 1.3 per cent between 2017 and 2018.

The percentage of online applications for primary school places has continued to increase. Parents who applied online will be notified of their child’s place by email at 10am today (16 April), letters are being posted today to parents and those with online accounts can log in to the council’s parent portal at www.york.gov.uk/parentportal.

In 2018 all children within the local authority area have secured a primary school place. The majority of children got one of their first three preferences; with the number of children whose preferences were not able to be met being reduced from 25 in 2017 to11 in 2018.

A detailed school by school analysis can be found by clicking here

School attendance in York above regional and national averages

New figures published last week (22 March 2018) for the past academic year show that attendance at York schools is higher than regional and national averages.

The data shows that attendance at City of York Schools is 95.6% which compares to the overall attendance at schools nationally of 95.3% and regionally of 95.1%.

The Department for Education also released data regarding the number of pupils they regard as persistent absentees (any pupil missing 10% or more of their possible sessions). This data shows that the number of pupils who are regarded as persistent absentees is significantly lower in City of York at 9.8% as opposed to the national figure of 10.8% and the regional figure of 11.9%.

Department for Education research shows that for all pupils, as their overall absence increases their attainment decreases. The end of Key Stage 2 tests show that pupils with no absence are more than three times more likely to achieve a level 5 or above than pupils absent for 10-15% of their sessions. Similarly at the end of Key Stage 4, when pupils sit their GCSE exams, pupils with no absence are more than twice as likely to achieve 5 or more GCSEs at grades A*-C.
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Major improvements announced at Westfield School

Westfield school

A meeting of the Councils Executive will be asked next week to agree to an investment of £650,000 at Westfield Primary school

The money will be spent modernising and expanding school meal provision at the school.

A report  describes the background to the plan. ”

The increasing number of pupils at the school has highlighted the problems the  school currently has around the management of the school meals service as more pupils are having a school meal.

The proposed scheme will include work on both the dining and kitchen areas which will address current safety concerns and enable more pupils to access nutritional school meals”.

92.3 per cent of York pupils get their first choice of secondary school

Secondary school allocations by choice 2018

Today, secondary school admission figures for entry in September 2018 are published. 92.3 per cent of York pupils have got their first preference.

While the percentage of first choice places remains the same as last year, 98 per cent children got one of their first three preferences representing an increase of 0.5 per cent on last year.

The number of online applications for secondary school places has continued to increase and this year, 97 per cent applied online, that’s 0.9 per cent more than in 2017.

Parents who applied online will be notified of their child’s place by email at 10am today, letters are being posted today to parents and those with online accounts can log in to the council’s parent portal at www.york.gov.uk/parentportal.

With more pupils entering secondary schools this year than last year apply for their catchment school and were informed which school this was in writing. Some chose not to follow this advice.

Besides parents being advised by letter, we will be posting advice and timelines offering advice and support throughout these 10 days on social media @School_Services .

Councillor Carol Runciman, executive member for education, children and young people, said: “I’m delighted that so many pupils will be able to attend the secondary school of their choice.

“Here in York, we continue to provide an educational experience that is among the best in the UK and this is a significant reason for families to settle in the city.

“Maintaining our high standards alongside meeting a growing demand for places is an ongoing challenge. It’s one we continue to meet and to which we are committed.”

“I urge any parent whose children may be eligible for free school meals – one of a number of benefits that come with applying for the pupil premium – to apply via their online account at www.york.gov.uk/parentportal

School closures in York following snow

Several schools in York will be closed today following overnight snow. Those affected include:

  • All Saints RC School is closing at 13.15
  • Applefields School
  • Archbishop Holgates CE Academy
  • Badger Hill Primary School is closing at 15.15 (parents can collect their children anytime from 13.00)
  • Bishopthorpe Infant School
  • Carr Infant School
  • Copmanthorpe Primary School
  • Danesgate Community to all except Year 11
  • Fulford School
  • Hob Moor Oaks School
  • Huntington Primary Academy
  • Huntington Secondary School
  • The Joseph Rowntree School
  • Manor CE Academy
  • Millthorpe School
  • Naburn CE Primary School
  • Robert Wilkinson Primary Academy
  • St Aelred’s RC Primary School is closing at 12.30
  • St Paul’s Nursery School is closing at 12.30
  • St Paul’s Primary School is closing at 13.00
  • Vale of York Academy
  • Wheldrake with Thorganby CE Primary School
  • York High School

Also North Yorkshire Schools – Easingwold School and Tadcaster Grammar School

An up to date list can be found by clicking this link

Pupils asked: ‘Should you sack your chauffeur?’

Pupils in York are being asked ‘should you sack your chauffeur?’ as part of a drive to improve pedestrian safety at school gates.

Dringhouses, Hempland and Westfield primary schools are piloting the scheme and are holding short assemblies to launch it this week (w/c 26 February).

The children will be shown examples of poor driving habits, illustrated in a lighthearted way, but with the intention that they will help to encourage their parents to drive and park more considerately.

Currently, the council receives frequent and numerous complaints about unsafe driving and parking outside schools. This partnership approach with schools aims to involve young passengers to encourage their drivers to behave in a more responsible way around the school, making it safer and more pleasant for everyone.

In addition, parking awareness road sign characters will be loaned to the schools and located to best influence driver behaviour. The campaign will be supported by monitoring and enforcement against illegal and inconsiderate parking.

If the pilot proves successful, it will be rolled out to other primary schools areas where inconsiderate driving and parking have been identified as a particular concern.

Gill Williams, headteacher of Dringhouses Primary School, said: “Inconsiderate and dangerous parking and driving during morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times is a constant problem for our school.   There are road markings outside school to deter cars from parking close to the school gates, however a small minority of parents still choose to park on these lines or use the entrance to the school gates to drop off or do a U-turn.  It is only a matter of time before someone is seriously injured.

“We very much welcome this new safety initiative and hope that, by engaging the children in a fun and creative way, the importance of road safety awareness will be raised.”

Universal Credit and its impact in York – Call for Evidence

Later this year, a Council report regarding the impact of Universal Credit and it’s rollout in York will be presented to the Executive Member for Adult Social Care.  As part of this, the Liberal Democrats would like to hear from residents about their experiences of accessing Universal Credit.

The report, due to be presented on the 14th June 2018, will be given to Cllr Carol Runciman to consider as part of her responsibilities to review financial inclusion in York.

Given the controversial nature of Universal Credit and the difficulties some residents have had using the service; the Liberal Democrats are keen to ensure residents in York have their experiences included as part of the report, so it is truly reflective of the current situation.

If a resident would like to share their experience of Universal Credit in York, then please do contact Cllr Carol Runciman at cllr.crunciman@york.gov.uk to make sure your observations are included.

Cllr Carol Runciman, Liberal Democrat Executive Member for Adult Social Care, said:

“The rollout of Universal Credit has caused a great deal of stress for many residents across the City.”

“It is absolutely vital that the Council considers the impact of Universal Credit in York and listens to the experiences of residents using the system.”

“I would strongly encourage anyone who accesses Universal Credit to share with their experiences me and ensure that their voices are included as part of this report.”

Free school meals

The Tory government is repealing the free school meal legislation introduced by the last coalition government.

New regulations published this week indicate that a child will only receive a free mid day meal if his or her parents are in receipt of Universal Credit and earn less that £617 a month.

The new rules come into effect on 1st April 2018

Several families in York are expected to be hit hard by the new cut.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/148/pdfs/uksi_20180148_en.pdf