Mum faces four hour trip after daughter refused place at Sheffield junior school

Lynne Briggs is angry her daughter hasn't got into her local junior school. Instead Charlotte has been given a place st Shotters Grove in Stannington.
Lynne Briggs is angry her daughter hasn't got into her local junior school. Instead Charlotte has been given a place st Shotters Grove in Stannington.
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A mum could be forced to give up her job after her daughter was refused a place at a junior school – even though they live just 150 yards from its entrance.

Broomhill Infant pupil Charlotte Briggs, of Crosspool, Sheffield, was refused a place at Lydgate Junior School and instead given a spot at Shooters Grove Primary – more than two miles away in Stannington.

Mum Lynne said she faces four hours of travelling each day and would be forced to give up her job in IT at Sheffield Council to drop off and pick up the seven-year-old from school.

She believed Broomhill Infants was a feeder school to Lydgate Juniors and therefore only put one school on Charlotte’s admission form.

But Sheffield Council said the school has never been a feeder school and advised parents to always submit three preferences when applying.

Lynne is now planning to appeal the decision made by the authority.

She said: “I know that lots of parents are in similar positions but what is different here is that not only are we in catchment, we live about as close to the school as possible.

“Parents park outside our house when dropping their children off at Lydgate Juniors.

“The council uses an ‘as the crow flies’ criteria for working out who lives nearer in the event of over subscription within catchment and if I look out of my landing window, all that stands between us and the school are the Kings Court OAP flats and a couple of houses.

“I’ve been told Broomhill is no longer a feeder school and all the places have been allocated at other infant schools.

“I have looked at bus timetables. I wouldn’t be able to drop Charlotte off at school and get into town for work. It would take an hour and five minutes each way twice a day. I simply wouldn’t be able to do it.”

Jayne Ludlam, executive director of children, young people and families at Sheffield Council, said: “We do understand that it is difficult if a child cannot be offered a place at their preferred school.

“We always encourage parents to submit three preferences in case their first preference cannot be accommodated.

“Broomhill Infant School is not and has never been a linked feeder school to Lydgate Junior School and a member of the Admissions Team attended Broomhill in October 2014 to offer help and advice to parents before applying.

“If only one preference is submitted and cannot be accommodated, a place may have to be offered at the nearest school with available places.

“This may be a school outside the catchment area, if no other preferences were requested.

“If a family has specific reasons for seeking a place at an oversubscribed school they can submit an appeal to the independent appeals panel, which will convene in June and July.”