Frequently Asked Questions

School building

Frequently asked questions

Can parents state a preference for Church Lawton School?

You must state all preferences to your local authority. Church Lawton School can only take referrals via the local authority.

Students will require an Education Health Care (EHC) plan together with a diagnosis of autism. However, where a formal diagnosis is pending, a student might be accepted if professionals agree that the young person is presenting with key autism traits that are causing significant barriers to their learning.

Can parents express a preference for Church Lawton at any time during the academic year?

If your child is currently placed in a school, this should be formally raised at their annual review meeting. If your child is not currently placed in a school, you will need to contact your local authority SEN lead or Parent Partnership Group for more details.

If a child has missed a significant amount of education, would the school be able to cater for them based on the key stage they were in when last in education, rather than their current age?

This would be given serious consideration and decisions would be made based on the child’s individual needs.

Does the money spent on this school come from the funds available elsewhere in the council's budgets?

No, it is funded via the Educational Funding Agency (EFA).

Will parents need to pay for anything?

No, apart from additional activities such as trips, music tuition, outdoor education visits, etc. We ask for voluntary contributions for these additional activities and you can find out more in our Charges and Remissions Policy.

Will it be possible for families to place a child at the school privately?


Presumably, the school will start with a few students and then grow to full capacity; how do you expect this to work?

We opened in 2015 and anticipate having classes of six students. We will admit three new classes (18 students) per year for the first three years and will reach our capacity of 60 students by the start of year four (during 2018). Initially we will prioritise younger students. When at capacity the school is likely to have one class per year group at secondary and pair year groups in other key stages.

Will children be expected to stay at the school throughout their education?

CLS offers a complete education all the way from age 4 to age 19. Some children will move on to other educational provisions before they are 19 and we will support them fully in their transition. We base decisions on each young person’s individual needs, as discussed in their annual review meeting and in collaboration with the young person, their parents and wider professionals.

What qualifications will the children be able to work towards or obtain at this school?

Church Lawton School will offer a broad range of options leading to national qualifications and accreditations. These will include GCSE and equivalent levels in core subjects (English, Maths and Science) as well as vocational and enrichment options leading to practical life outcomes, including independence, further education and work placements.

Is Church Lawton a day school or will there be any residential element?

The school offers day provision only and is not a residential school.