The new School Admissions Code (released in February 2012) introduced a new requirement on all admission authorities to broaden the existing priority for 'looked after children' or children in care, in accordance with section 22 of the Children Act 1989, to also include 'previously looked after' children, for 2013 admissions onwards.
Children who were 'previously looked after' are defined for the purposes of the legislation as those who immediately after being in care became subject to an adoption, child arrangement/residence, or special guardianship order.
a special guardianship order appointing one or more individuals to be a child's special guardian(s), under section 14A of the Children Act 1989
a child arrangement/residence order settling the arrangements to be made as to the person with whom the child is to live under section 8 of the Children Act 1989 or
an adoption order under section 46 of the Adoption and Children act 2002 or Section 12 of the 1976 Adoption Act*.
*Please note: On 13 May 2014, the Department of Education changed it's guidance regarding 'previously looked after children' to include children adopted under the 1976 Adoption Act. The new DfE guidance can be found by clicking on this hyperlink. Hampshire County Council has changed it's policies in response.
Parents/guardians of 'previously looked after children' should tick the 'Looked after child' box on the online application form (if you do not know the name of a current social worker, please enter 'unknown') and send the relevant evidence to the Admissions Team. Priority cannot be given without the evidence being submitted. Reference may need to be made to the local authority where the child was in care to verify the child's status.