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Applying for a place in years 7-11

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Dane Court, as an ‘outstanding’ grammar school, is heavily over-subscribed in all year groups and holds waiting lists. The school also requires prospective students to have passed an admissions test. Please read the following advice carefully before making an application to the school via the local education authority.

The latest admissions information for Dane Court

For information on the admissions process including the changes this year please see the Kent County Council website.

Year 6 Entry into Year 7 in September 2021

Congratulations to all those students who worked hard and passed the Kent Test. If you would like to come to Dane Court, please put it down as your preferred choice on your Secondary Common Application Form to be submitted by 2 November 2020. You will receive your offer letter from Kent County Council on 1 March 2021 and if you are successful in gaining a place welcome packs will be sent out by the school around 4 March 2021. If your child has passed the Kent test and you applied for but were not offered a place at Dane Court, please complete the Waiting List Request by 15 March 2021. If there are any places available these will be allocated to children on the waiting list from 21 April 2021 onwards. If a place does not become available your case can go to appeal if you submit an appeal form, together with any supporting documentation, directly to the school. The deadline for lodging appeals is Friday 26 March 2021.

The waiting list is maintained in order of the school’s oversubscription criteria. Information about waiting lists and how to appeal will be sent to you on 1 March by Kent County Council when you are told the outcome of your secondary school application. You can appeal and/or request a place on the waiting list of more than one school.

If your son/daughter has not taken the Kent Test, please see the relevant section below.

If your son/daughter has not passed the Kent Test and you would like to appeal for a place at Dane Court, you can do this from 1 March 2021 onwards. Appeal forms will be available on-line from Kent County Council. Unfortunately, you cannot appeal for a place before 1 March. Please make sure that you have lodged your appeal with Dane Court by 26 March 2021. Supporting documents can be sent to the school up to 2 weeks before the appeal date. Appeals are usually held in May or June. The Appeal Panel Clerk will then notify you of the time and date of your appeal approximately 10 days in advance of the hearing. The school cannot advise you about what can be included as part of your appeal, but you could discuss this with the headteacher of your child’s primary school if you are unsure. Please be aware that to be eligible to appeal, Dane Court must be named on your Secondary Common Application Form (SCAF).

Year 6 to 7 Admission and the Kent Test from September 2020

What happens when?

Key Action Key Dates in Scheme
National closing date for applications 2 November 2020
National Offer Day 1 March 2021
Dane Court sends out welcome letters around 4 March 2021
Closing date for accepting/declining a school place 15 March 2021

Key points to note in order to gain a place at Dane Court:

  • Make sure your child takes the Kent Test in September
  • You will know the result of the Kent Test before making your choice of schools.
  • If your child has passed the Kent Test, you must put Dane Court as your preferred choice on the ‘Secondary Common Application Form’.
  • If your child has not passed the Kent Test but you want to appeal for a place, you must put Dane Court on your ‘Secondary Common Application Form’, to allow you to lodge an appeal as early as possible.

It is important that you make sure that your son/daughter takes the Kent Test and that Dane Court is your preferred choice, if you would like a place at the school. The school cannot consider any applications to Dane Court without the child having taken the Kent Test. The ‘Secondary Common Application Form’ must be completed for entry to Dane Court Grammar School. This is part of a central admissions system organised by the education authority, not the school. They will be able to answer any questions regarding the admissions process as well as your child’s current primary school, especially with regards to the changes this year. We are delighted to answer any further queries you may have. Open days and evenings are held annually. Details of the Open Day and how it will run during the COVID-19 pandemic will be published in the press and on the website, or available from the school office in due course. Fliers are also sent to all the local primary schools.

Which school should I put first?
You should name the schools in the order you most want them. If you would like a grammar school place, you must name the grammar school(s) you want higher on your form than the non-selective schools; otherwise you may be given a high school place, regardless of whether your son/daughter passed the Kent Test. It is no longer the case that if you want a place at a particular high school you have to put it first on the application form. Schools do not know which order you have put them on the application form and therefore cannot use it to rank order students if they are over-subscribed. Please contact the school if you need clarification on this issue, because there is still a lot of misinformation being given out since the system changed. 

What happens if my son/daughter is offered a place at Dane Court?
You must confirm acceptance of your place immediately and return the school’s admission form together with your child’s birth certificate, which will be returned to you. If you delay in accepting a place, it will be offered to another student. If we are over-subscribed, your son's/daughter’s name will be put on a waiting list.

Is it possible to get a place at Dane Court if my son/daughter has put another school as first choice?
Yes. When places are allocated children are prioritised according to the school's oversubscription criteria, not where parents named them on their application form.

Although I applied for Dane Court my child has been offered a place at another school. How can I pursue a place at Dane Court?
Even though Dane Court may not have been your preferred choice on your application form, if you have been turned down but still want a place at the school, you need to write a letter of appeal to Dane Court, stating the reasons, name of primary school and the test scores. If there is space available and your child would be next on the waiting list, an automatic offer can be made without a hearing in front of a panel. However, if the school is oversubscribed, you will be given a hearing with an independent appeal panel who will make the decision to admit, if appropriate. Please let the other school know as soon as you have secured a place at Dane Court so the school you have declined can offer the place to someone on their waiting list.
If your child is due to start secondary school in September 2020 you can appeal between 1 March and 26 March 2021 to be considered on time and to guarantee the appeal is heard within the normal round of school appeals. For applications made in the normal admission round, appeals must be heard within 40 school days of the deadline for lodging appeals.  For late applications, appeals should be heard within 40 schools days from the deadline for lodging appeals where possible, or within 30 schools days of the appeals being lodged.

What happens if my son/daughter does not pass the Kent Test?
If your son/daughter does not gain the required scores to gain admission to Dane Court but you believe your son/daughter is best suited to a grammar school education, please put Dane Court on the Common Application Form. This will mean that you can appeal for a place at the school in March after you have been informed of the high school that has been awarded to your son/daughter. You need to do this before 27 March at the latest, otherwise you will miss having your appeal heard alongside other Year 6 appeals. The appeals panel does not make any decision about offering places until all appeals that were submitted by 26 March have been heard for Year 6 into Year 7. Each appeal hearing usually takes 20-30 minutes. The high number of appeals usually means that this can take around two weeks. These usually take place in late May or early June. 

Students who have taken the Kent Test in Year 6 cannot take another test for admission into Year 7. Dane Court cannot offer places based on KS2 SATs results. You can appeal to as many schools as you wish as long as you have applied and been turned down for a place at the school you wish to pursue. If you have not put Dane Court Grammar School on your Common Application Form, you will not be able to appeal for a place at the school until after 21 April when the Kent system has finished. This may lead to a delay in your appeal being heard, thus reducing your chances of gaining a place at the school. It is important that you find out the results of the Kent Test for your son/daughter from your primary school if you do not know them. The fact that the Kent Test is taken early should not disadvantage Year 6 students. The top 25% of children who take the test usually attain the pass mark. 

How can my son/daughter take the Kent Test if the official testing dates have been missed?
If your son/daughter has not taken the Kent Test, please contact county admissions for advice.

New to Kent?
If you are moving into Kent, you need to contact the education authority about making an application to a secondary school.

Admissions to current year groups 2020-2021

Admissions to Year 7

Until January, Year 7 students who wish to come to Dane Court Grammar School must take the Kent Test. This consists of a day’s worth of tests, and results are available within two weeks. As from January in Year 7, students can take the school’s own admissions test according to the procedure set out below. Currently, the school does not have any places in Year 7, which is heavily oversubscribed.

Admissions for Year 8 to Year 10

Dane Court Grammar School is currently oversubscribed for all year groups. It holds a waiting list for all year groups. The waiting list ranks potential students according to its admissions criteria. This puts looked-after children first; secondly, students with a specific disability and for whom Dane Court is the most appropriate school; third, siblings; and fourth, students nearest to the school as the crow flies. It is not based on length of time spent on the waiting list. Students are required to take two languages at KS3. Please take this into consideration if your son/daughter has only taken one language at his/her current school. We typically receive large numbers of requests from parents who have children who are unhappy at their current school. We would strongly advise working with the current school to resolve the problem because a change of school can seriously disrupt a child’s education. You must contact the Kent Local Authority (03000-412121) for an In-Year Admissions Form in order to apply for Dane Court or any other secondary school.

The Selection Test
If you would like your son/daughter to be considered for admission to Dane Court from Year 8 to Year 10, he/she needs to sit the school’s selection test. The test takes under two hours and will assess verbal, quantitative and non-verbal skills. We do not advise moving schools after September of Year 10 because of different examination board specifications, missed coursework and examinations which are a vital part of the GCSE assessment. Because of the nature of the curriculum and timetable at Dane Court, it is not possible to guarantee that a student will be able to follow exactly the same GCSE options at Dane Court as in their previous school.

Testing Dates and Procedures for Year 8 to Year 10.
Tests at Dane Court are arranged according to demand, and usually take place on the first week of each month at 9:30am except during holidays.
PLEASE NOTE: During the Covid pandemic we have been unable to arrange testing due to safety restrictions.
Please telephone or email the school office if you would like your son/daughter to take the test. If you email, please make sure that you have a reply, to confirm that your email has been received. We will need to know your child’s full name, date of birth, current school, a contact telephone number, home address and which languages have been studied in order to register for a test. A faster response can be given if email is used. We regard dealing with admissions as a high priority and it is important we have your name and contact details correct; with this in mind please do not leave messages on the school answering machine. On the day of the test, please follow the signs to the school office. Unfortunately, we cannot test if you are late. Please also note that you need to have contacted Kent LEA for an In-Year Admissions Form to apply for a place at Dane Court.

We endeavour to give you the results of the test as soon as possible the following day. The school cannot offer a place to a student, without passing the test.

If a place is not offered because of oversubscription or failure to pass the test, parents have the right to appeal. This should be done by submitting a letter to the school stating your case and any supporting information. You will then be invited to make your case in person to an independent appeals panel. An appeal hearing can take up to a term to be heard because an appeal panel has to be appointed and a venue booked. You will have the opportunity to present your case verbally at the hearing as well as on paper. A representative from the school will also attend the hearing, stating the reason why admission has been refused. The school does not have a role in making the final decision in an appeal because it is entirely at the discretion of the independent panel.

Admissions to Year 11

Changing schools midway through GCSE study is not advised because students will have missed some public examinations, coursework assignments and a large proportion of exam preparation. Year 11 is always over-subscribed, so even if a student successfully completed the tests in Year 11, a place could not be offered.

How to apply
To apply for a place at Dane Court, you need to contact Secondary Admissions Team at Kent County Council (03000-412121) for an application form. If you would like your son/daughter to take the admissions test, please contact the school office. Please do not leave a message on the school’s answering machine. If you would like any further information regarding admissions, please contact the Admissions Officer.

Admissions to the Sixth Form for the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme and International Baccalaureate Career-related Certificate

Dane Court Grammar School is delighted to receive applications for the Sixth Form. Dane Court offers the International Baccalaureate Programme. Applicants will be admitted to Year 12 if there is a vacant place, having obtained the Sixth Form entry requirement of eight GCSE passes at grade 5 or above, including English, Mathematics and a Modern Language with at least six at grade 6 or above for entry to the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. Five GCSEs at grade 5 or above with three at grade 6 or above for entry to the International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme. The Sixth Form has been oversubscribed in previous years so an early application is encouraged for September entry. Please contact the school if you would like a prospectus. The Open Evening is usually held in November and includes a presentation about the Sixth Form, student life and future options. The evening will also provide an opportunity to visit departments and ask questions of subject staff and current IB students. Entry to the Sixth Form is dependent on places being available. Priority will be given to those already at the school.

Sports day 2019
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