The consultation can be viewed here.
The proposed changes are limited to those the DfE considers necessary to push through urgently now, rather than representing an overhaul of the Code as a whole. Notably, views are not currently being sought in respect of changes to the way in which 'summer born children' are admitted, although the DfE says it is still committed to doing this in due course.
The proposed changes fall into the following categories:
- Changes to the way in-year admissions are dealt with by admission authorities (including where admission authorities sub-contract out the administration of these to their local authority), for example to introduce timescales requiring a specific in-year admission application form
- Changes to Fair Access Protocols, to introduce new categories of children and ensure that they are implemented correctly
- Expanding the definition of "previously looked after children" to include those adopted from being in care outside of England (as promised back in 2017)
- Changes to the way the children of UK Armed Forces personnel and Crown servants are admitted, to make it easier for them to achieve places before they move to the area.
The DfE has published a Consultation Document setting out the proposed changes in detail, with questions and details of how views can be submitted, along with the proposed new Code.
If you have any queries regarding the proposed DfE changes, please contact Yvonne Spencer (020 7665 0870) or Joanna Goddard (020 7665 0805) in our Regulatory Compliance team, or complete the form below.