Readers ask: How Do Primary School Waiting Lists Work?

How are primary school places decided?

Places in a primary school are allocated by priority, through seven phases of the Primary 1 registration exercise. From Phase 2A(1), when the number of applications exceeds the vacancies available in a specific phase, balloting will be held. All applicants under this phase will be given places in the school.

Can a school refuse to admit a child?

If it is a maintained school, the local authority can direct the school to admit the child. If it is an Academy, the local authority cannot direct them to admit the child. The local authority can, however, contact the Department for Education (DfE) and let them know that the Academy has refused to admit the child.

How do primary school applications work?

When you’re applying for a primary school place, you’ll be asked to list several (usually between three and six depending on your local council), in order of preference. If they’re able to offer your child a place at two or more of the schools you listed, they’ll give you the one that you ranked the highest.

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How does continued interest work?

Continuing interest (CI) is the waiting list system managed by the Council. You will automatically be placed in the first continuing interest run for any schools that you ranked more highly than the one you were offered a place at – so long as the school’s admissions arrangements are run by Herts CC.

What age group is primary school?

A primary school (in Ireland, the UK & Australia), junior school (in Australia), elementary school or grade school (in the US & Canada) is a school for primary education of children who are four to eleven years of age (and sometimes up to thirteen years of age ).

When should I start applying for primary school?

If your child is due to start primary school in September 2021, you need to apply for a primary school place. The deadline for applications is 15 January 2021. If you missed the closing date, you’ll still need to apply online.

What are good reasons for appealing a school place?

Places at a school can be granted on appeal in two circumstances: 1) When a school has applied its admissions procedures incorrectly (rare as hens’ teeth), or 2) When the harm done to your child by not getting a place there will be greater than that caused to all the other children by overcrowding.

What happens if you decline a school place?

If you decline the offer and you have no alternative place you will be responsible for finding your child another school. The place you decline may be offered to another child so may not be available later if you change your mind.

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What do I do if my child doesn’t get a school place?

You can do this by contacting the primary school admissions department of your local council. If the school is an academy, church school or free school, they will look after their own waiting lists and you should contact the school directly.

How many primary schools should I apply for?

You can list up to six choices of primary school, depending on area, and it’s vital to include at least one where you are more-or-less sure of getting a place – even if it isn’t your first choice. If you don’t, you may only be offered an undersubscribed school some distance away.

How do primary school catchment areas work?

A catchment area is basically the area from which a school’s pupils are drawn. For most schools, there’s no such thing as a fixed catchment area. It changes every year depending on things like how many applications the school received and how many siblings of existing pupils applied that year (as they get priority).

Does the sibling rule still apply?

Two London local authorities have amended the sibling priority rule from 2016, taking away the automatic entitlement to school places for a number of families. Brent and Wandsworth councils will stop giving priority to siblings if their family no longer lives within a catchment area.

What happens if I decline a primary school place?

If you have been refused a place at all of the schools you listed on your application form, your child will automatically be added to the waiting lists for all of them. You are encouraged to accept the place you have been offered and wait to see if you can be offered one of your preferred schools from the waiting list.

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Do schools have waiting lists?

All schools in Newham hold waiting lists if they have more applications than places available. Children are automatically added to the waiting list when their parents/carers have a current live school application for the school and that school is listed as a higher preference than a school they have been offered.

How do I write a waiting list letter?

Here are 6 steps to a successful waitlist letter that will get noticed:

  1. Find Your Specific Admissions Representative.
  2. Be Yourself in Tone.
  3. Be Specific in the “Why This College” Section.
  4. Be Specific in Your Goals for the College.
  5. Share What’s Changed Since You Submitted Your Application.

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