Here are the determined admissions arrangements for voluntary aided and foundation schools and academies who have determined their arrangements for 2019/20.
The High Court has ordered that the following agreed definitions must be put in all admission policies for entry in Spetember 2018 onwards.
1. Schools with a ‘practising Catholic’ criterion must update the current definition of ‘practising Catholic’/Certificate of Catholic Practice to:
Certificate of Catholic Practice’ means a certificate issued by the family’s parish priest (or the priest in charge of the church where the family attends Mass) in the form laid down by the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.
It will be issued if the priest is satisfied that at least one Catholic parent or carer (along with the child, if he or she is over 7 years old) have (except when it was impossible to do so) attended Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation for at least 5 years (or, in the case of the child, since the age of 7, if shorter). It will also be issued when the practice has been continuous since being received into the Church if that occurred less than 5 years ago.
It is expected that most Certificates will be issued on the basis of attendance. A Certificate may also be issued by the priest when attendance is interrupted by exceptional circumstances which excuse from the obligation to attend on that occasion or occasions.
Further details of these circumstances can be found in the guidance issued to priests.
2. Schools with a criterion referring to ‘Christians of other denominations’ must update the current definition to:
'Children of other Christian denominations' means: children who belong to other churches and ecclesial communities which, acknowledging God’s revelation in Christ, confess the Lord Jesus Christ as God and Saviour according to the Scriptures, and, in obedience to God’s will and in the power of the Holy Spirit commit themselves: to seek a deepening of their communion with Christ and with one another in the Church, which is his body; and to fulfil their mission to proclaim the Gospel by common witness and service in the world to the glory of the one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. An ecclesial community which on principle has no credal statements in its tradition, is included if it manifests faith in Christ as witnessed to in the Scriptures and is committed to working in the spirit of the above.
All members of Churches Together in England and of CYTÛN are deemed to be included in the above definition, as are all other churches and ecclesial communities that are in membership of any local Churches Together Group (by whatever title) on the above basis.
3. Schools with a criterion for ‘children of other faiths’ must update the current definition to:
'Children of other faiths' means children who are members of a religious community that does not fall within the definition of ‘other Christian denominations’ and which falls within the definition of a religion for the purposes of charity law. The Charities Act 2011 defines religion to include:
- A religion which involves belief in more than one God, and
- A religion which does not involve belief in a God.
Case law has identified certain characteristics which describe the meaning of religion for the purposes of charity law, which are characterised by a belief in a supreme being and an expression of belief in that supreme being through worship.
Updated arrangements for Catholic schools are available in the school directory, and on individual school websites.