Mansfield pupil had "tears in his eyes" when he did not get into his chosen secondary schools

A Mansfield family has been left concerned about their son’s future after he missed out on his preferred schools.

Tuesday, 12th March 2019, 3:52 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th March 2019, 4:58 pm
Dylan Lawson.

Nurse Michelle Smith said her son Dylan Lawson had tears in his eyes when she told him he had not gotten into his chosen schools.

Ms Smith, aged 45, said they were expecting Dylan to be allocated a place at The Samworth Church Academy, as Dylan’s current school, Wynndale Primary, is a recognised feeder school for the Sherwood Hall Road academy and he was taken on day trips there.

Dylan also missed out on places at his second and third choices, The Joseph Whitaker School, Rainworth, and Tuxford Academy, Tuxford, and was instead allocated a place at Queen Elizabeth’s Academy in Mansfield.

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Dylan Lawson.

Ms Smith said: “We couldn’t believe it, we thought there had been an error.

“He was the only one out of his year to not get into a chosen school. We feel like we have been singled out.”

Dylan and his younger brother live part-time on Rutland Street, Mansfield, with their dad and part-time with their mum in Newark.

She said: “We’ve been told the catchment for his dad’s house is The Brunts Academy, and that hasn’t even been offered.

“If he goes to Queen Elizabeth’s he would have to walk 45 minutes on busy roads – I am not happy with him doing that.

“Eleven-year-old’s don’t need this kind of stress, they have enough to worry about with Sats.

“And you can already see my younger son panic to think which school he would go to.”

Ms Smith said her family is now in limbo as the appeal she has launched will take six weeks to reach a decision.

She said: “We are not the first or the last family that this has happened to.

“We can’t refuse until we get another school.”

Marion Clay, service director for education, learning and skills at Nottinghamshire County Council, the admissions authority, said: “We understand this parent will be concerned given that three preferences were made.

“Most children have been offered their first preference for children living in Mansfield, 86 per cent were offered their first preference and 93.6 per cent were offered one of their preferences.

“We do understand that Ms Smith will be distressed at this time as none of the preferences could be met.

“As all the academies listed on the application were oversubscribed it was not possible to offer a place at any of Ms Smith’s preferences and we allocated the next closest school with places available, which was Queen Elizabeth’s.

“The council is not able to intervene in the process.”