A DROITWICH dad has hit out at the school admissions system after their daughter was given a school eight miles away with no direct public transport links.
Andy and Sally Clarke applied for Hollie, nine, to go to Westacre Middle School where their eldest daughter Emmie attends.
But on Tuesday, when they received their offer letter they were shocked to find she had been offered a place at St Nicholas’ School in Pinvin, near Pershore.
The family live in Tibberton which is 4.8 miles away from Westacre and close to where Andy and Sally own their own business Nomeq – on the North Street Industrial Estate.
He said: “I’ve got nothing against Westacre which is a fantastic school and why we want Hollie to go there.
“It would be a logistical nightmare for us to get both girls to schools on time and for us to then get into work on time, not to mention the extra emotional and financial stress.”
There is a paid-for school bus which goes to St Nicholas’ School from Crowle but, Andy said, as well as the extra drive in the morning and afternoon, there was no guarantee Hollie would get a place on the bus.
“It would also mean she would not be able to take part in any after-school clubs or activities.”
Andy, who admits he did put St Nicholas’ down as the second choice as the form insisted parents list more than one school, but with her sister being at the school and the family being in the catchment area he thought they would get their first choice.
He has now put Hollie’s name on the Westacre Middle School waiting list and lodged an appeal with Worcestershire County Council over the decision.
Nick Wilson, Worcestershire County Council’s assistant director of education and skills, said: “Every child that submitted an application to the County Council received a school place, with 98.5 per cent of children receiving one of their preferred schools.”
He urged anybody who was unhappy with the place their child had been allocated should visit worcestershire.gov.uk/schooladmissions to view the appeals process.
“Appeals should be lodged within 20 school days from the national offer day,” he said.