Primary school places – how to check if your child got their first choice and what to do if they didn’t


FAMILIES across the country have finally found out what primary school their kids will be attending from September.

But what should you do if your child hasn’t been offered their first choice?

Half a million families have received a primary school offer – but many have missed out on their first choice

How do you check if your child got their first choice of primary school?

April 16, 2019, is national allocation day, when families find out which school their child has been offered a place.

You should receive an email from your local council on April 16.

Or, councils also provide links via their online education pages to enable you to log in the admissions system, to check the result.

Your area’s local authority supplies booklets about schools’ criteria, and how to apply for a place for each institution.

Upon receiving an offer, you are advised when to accept or decline it.

Tuesday, April 30, is the date by which online acceptances must be submitted, and acceptance slips must be returned.

If you don’t accept or decline, some councils warn that they might offer the place to someone else, and then offer you a place at your nearest school that still has places.

They will advise you to accept your place, so your child definitely has a school to attend from September.

Herts county council points out, for example, that this doesn’t affect your chances of getting a school you prefer later, either on the continuing interest list for a particular school, or through a school admission appeal.

What do I do if my child didn’t get first choice?

The New Schools Network (NSN) says that “official research has highlighted that up to 100,000 families will be offered places in schools that are failing to provide a good education.”

It warned that “12,500 of these families will be forced to attend a school that has been failing for the last 14 years.”

This is based on Ofsted data showing that 2,223 primary schools are “rated as inadequate or requires improvement.

“This means that around 95,000 four-and-five-year-olds will be starting their school days in schools that are not good enough,” the network adds.

Paul Whiteman, the general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: “Choosing the right primary school and securing a place there can feel like a battle for parents.”

If your child is refused a place at a particular school, you can appeal against the decision – the letter from your local council will tell you how.

The government’s schools’ admissions pages says that “you must appeal against each rejection separately. You can only appeal once against each rejection.”

If your child doesn’t have a school place, you should contact your local council to find places in your area.

The admission authority for the school must allow you at least 20 school days to appeal from when they send the decision letter.

Appeals must be heard within 40 school days of the deadline for making an appeal.

Admission appeals are heard June to July.

For more information, contact your local admission authority.




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