To all Richmond Inclusive Schools Campaign supporters

Hi everyone,
Today we’re launching a major new report “Faith-Based Discrimination in Richmond Primary School Offers 2013…and how local church schools could become “more community-minded”.

Click here to read/download it.
Key point: Over a third of the borough's primary places are at its sixteen church schools, thirteen of which are over-subscribed. Data on the initial offers made to parents for September 2013 entry show that nearly 80% of places at those thirteen schools were allocated on a faith basis.  The majority of the borough's community schools are also over-subscribed, making the effect of restrictive entrance policies at church schools more acute. We're calling on church school governing bodies to act on Vince Cable's recent request to make their schools more community-minded.
The report includes:
  • A map showing the position at all the borough’s church and community primaries on the basis of the offers originally made in April.
  • More details on the schools in areas particularly affected: most parts of Twickenham-north Teddington, and central Barnes-Mortlake-central Sheen.
  • Data on the degree of faith-based selection at all the borough’s church schools and a chart ranking the schools by their degree of exclusivity, along with a classification of their admissions policies.
  • Specific suggestions on how each school could amend their admissions policy to become more community-minded when they are over-subscribed. These suggestions don’t meet RISC’s ultimate aim of full inclusivity, but they are all steps school governing bodies could take quickly if they chose to, without changing their schools' status or ethos. (“Quickly” in this context means acting over the coming months to meet the deadlines for changing admissions policies for September 2015 entry.) 
Governing bodies now have the evidence they need to make some positive decisions about their admissions policies over coming months.  We are hopeful that they will choose to do that. It’s encouraging that the Anglican Diocese of London is also advocating greater inclusivity. The report on the front page of this week’s Richmond & Twickenham Times, about a 4 year old living in Twickenham with no school place, only underlines the need for action.
What you can do
  • Spread the report around. Re-tweets and email forwarding welcome, and share it with your friends on Facebook.
  • Ask your local Councillors for their support for the changes suggested in your local area – they can’t decide, but they do have influence. (Please let us know what they say!)
  • If you have any leverage or interest in a specific church school – for example, if your children already attend it or you may want them to do so in the future – write to/email the Chair of Governors.
  • Let us know any other ideas to help trigger some action.
RISC Core Team