After a decade of Tamba campaigning, a new school admissions code for England has been published, which includes a provision to stop twins, triplets or more being split up between separate primary schools against their will. Our research shows that hundreds of sets of multiples were being split up each year and many thousands of families faced the worry that it could happen to them. The problem stems from the introduction of maximum class sizes in 1998, when legislation limited infant classes for Reception and Key Stage 1 & 2 to 30 pupils per class.
We are delighted to report that the code in England now has our proposal for twins, triplets and more included in a list of exceptions, so that if one child secures a place then their twin or other multiples will automatically be accepted, even where class size would then exceed 30 pupils.
There is further great news. In their latest consultation (Jan 2013) on the Welsh code, the Welsh Government appear likely to adopt the same approach. You can read our response here.
This has been a long road. We first raised the problem in 1999, and the first ever parliamentary debate on this issue was held in 2010. This change will make a massive difference to tens of thousands of multiple birth families every year.
We have been warning Governments and Assemblies that there are long standing problems with families having their twins, triplets or more placed in either the same or separate classrooms without being asked for their views and without the needs of the children being considered. Research suggests that this can be damaging to the children if not done properly.
We continue to make the case but will look to bring a legal challenge if the circumstances are right.
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