The Education (Admissions to Schools) Act 2018 was enacted in July 2018. A number of sections of the Act commenced in October 2018 and February 2020 respectively.
Sections commenced October 2018
Section 9- the prohibition on charging of fees for admission.
Section 9- the requirement for schools to cooperate in relation to admissions.
Section 11- the prohibition on the use of religion as a criterion in admission cases except in the case of a minority religion.
The fourth section commenced in December 2018.
Section 8- the NCSE can designate a school to open a special class following “ a number of steps”.
Sections commenced February 2020
Section 61 – the requirement for schools to include an admission statement as part of its admission policy
Section 62 – the requirement for schools to revise their admissions policies within 3 months of commencement of this section of the Act
Section 63 – the requirement for schools to publish an annual admission notice
Section 10 (a) –the requirement for schools to publish their Code of Behaviour.
Section 65 – relates to the enabling provision for regulations which contain the necessary procedures and timelines in advance of 1 February 2020.
In November 2020 Section 7 of the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 was commenced which amended Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 and replaced it with new appeals provisions which came into effect on November 12th 2020.
The new appeals process deals with appeals in relation to refusal to admit a student due to:
a) The school being oversubscribed
b) A reason other than the school being oversubscribed
c) The permanent expulsion of a pupil or the suspension of a pupil for a period in excess of 20 school days in a school year
Circular 69/2020 deals with the new appeals process and can be accessed along with a FAQ which has been prepared by INTO here -link https://www.into.ie/help-advice/school-leadership/school-admissions/s-29-appeals-procedures/