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No primary places for Hampstead family who live 200m from school

PUBLISHED: 12:54 22 April 2015 | UPDATED: 14:17 22 April 2015

Hampstead mum Jasmin Frydman hasn't got a school place for her son Oscar, despite living 200m from St Luke's Primary School. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Hampstead mum Jasmin Frydman hasn't got a school place for her son Oscar, despite living 200m from St Luke's Primary School. Picture: Nigel Sutton

© Nigel Sutton email pictures@nigelsuttonphotography.com

A family have been left without a primary school place despite living 200m from their nearest school in an example of the continuing squeeze on places across the capital.

Primary school place offers in numbers

In Camden, 24.09 per cent of children did not receive their top choice of primary school, down on 2 per cent from last year.

Meanwhile, 60 families - equivalent to 3 per cent of applicants – were left without any offers.

In Haringey, 84 per cent of children received their top choice of school, compared with the London average of 81 per cent. But 3 per cent were left without any place offers.

In Barnet, about one in five – or 20.05 – of children did not receive their first choice.

5 per cent of the borough’s children were without offers.

In Westminster, where one in five – 19.71 per cent – also missed out on their first choice. And nearly 4 per cent received no offers.

Nearly a quarter of Camden children missed out on their first choice of primary school after offers were made last Thursday, while one in five children in Barnet and Westminster did not receive their top choice.

Meanwhile, about 3 per cent of applicants in Camden and in Haringey are without any offer of a school place – including the Frydman-Orsteens, of Hampstead, and their four-year-old son Oscar. The family lives roughly 200m from their nearest school, the popular free school St Luke’s Church of England School in Kidderpore Avenue, Hampstead. But they were left without any offers at all on Thursday.

Mother Jasmin Frydman, 39, a personal trainer of Briardale Gardens, said: “If Camden want my taxes, I want them to provide me with a school place, where I don’t need to struggle to get him there and where I’m happy to send him.”

The family’s first choice for Oscar was St Luke’s, which last year was classed as one of the most popular schools in the UK by the Department for Education. The school is heavily oversubscribed, and has received 132 applications for its 15 reception places for September 2015.

Camden Council has pledged to work hard to secure all children a reception class place for September.

A Camden Council spokesman said: “In the coming weeks, as families accept or decline these offers, we expect this picture to change significantly and are working hard with families to secure all our residents a reception place for September 2015.”

This year has seen an unprecedented pressure on school places, with a record 103,387 applications for places received by London boroughs this year, up 900 from last year.

Despite the increased pressure, the number of offers has not dropped significantly since last year.

In Haringey, more than 84 per cent of children received their top choice of primary school – smashing the London average of 81 per cent.

And a total of 83 per cent of Camden children received offers for their first and second choice of primary school - a similar figure to last year.


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