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On Friday 14 September 2001, the adjudicator, Sir Peter Newsam, ...
On Friday 14 September 2001, the adjudicator, Sir Peter Newsam,

upheld an objection by Northamptonshire CC and two

foundation secondary schools in Wellingborough to the admission

arrangements at Sir Christopher Hatton School.

The adjudicator decided that the school's arrangements for selecting

10% of its intake on grounds of ability should be discontinued. He

took the view that Sir Christopher Hatton was a well-regarded school

where staff and governors had worked together to achieve high

standards. He did not consider those standards would be adversely

affected by his decision. All secondary schools now have an

opportunity to develop a distinctive ethos by selecting up to 10% of

pupils with an aptitude for what the school can offer in one or more

prescribed subjects. So there are other ways than by admitting

children on grounds of ability that a school can maintain its

distinctiveness. On the other hand, he considered that ending

selection by ability at Sir Christopher Hatton School would, over

time, help secure an improvement in educational outcomes elsewhere in

the town, though additional measures would be needed to achieve that



1. Schools adjudicators were appointed in response

to the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 to decide on school

organisation issues and admission arrangements which cannot be

resolved locally. Their role is to look afresh at all cases referred

to them, considering each case on its merits and taking account of

the reasons for disagreement at local level in the light of the

legislation and the guidance in the Code of Practice on Schools


2. Copies of the determination reached by the adjudicator can be

obtained from the office of the schools adjudicator. It can also be

found on the schools adjudicators website. Individual adjudicators are not in a

position to comment on their decisions but enquiries can be addressed

to: The Office of the Schools Adjudicator, Vincent House, 2 Woodland

Road, Darlington DL3 7PJ. Tel: 0191 202 3600

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