92.2% of Nottinghamshire parents secure first preference primary school place

92.2% of Nottinghamshire parents secure first preference primary school place
92.2% of Nottinghamshire parents secure first preference primary school place
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More than nine out of ten parents in Nottinghamshire have secured a place at their first preferred primary school for their children in September 2017.

This indicates an increase in the number of parents receiving an offer of their first preference school for their child.

Nottinghamshire County Council has today (Tuesday, 18 April) contacted 8,881 parents to let them know which school their son or daughter is to attend from September.

This year shows a decrease in the number of applications received before the closing date but an increase in the number of parents who have got a place at one of their preferred schools – 98.2%. Of the remainder, 164 (1.8% of applicants) have been offered a place at a school they didn’t include on their application. 70.7% of these parents only made a single preference.

The County Council said it had done all it could to ensure that parents send their child to a school they wanted.

Marion Clay, the council’s acting service director for education standards, said: “The situation as a whole continues to be encouraging as the majority of parents will be getting a school for which they made a preference.

“I am very happy that every child in Nottinghamshire, whose parents applied before the deadline, will have a primary school place in September 2017.

The schools adjudicator ruled that applications for September 2017 must be processed up to offer day according to the 2017/18 arrangements already in place, without priority for out of catchment siblings.

However, the adjudicator also ruled that waiting lists from offer day onwards must be held in accordance with revised arrangements for 2017/18, which reinstate priority for out of catchment siblings.

Waiting lists for oversubscribed community and voluntary controlled schools for the 2017/18 academic year, which are effective from 4 May 2017 onwards, will operate in line with the revised oversubscription criteria which will give priority to children living out of catchment who have a sibling connection.

“As an authority we are not complacent as we are aware of the pressures within the system and the increasing number of children coming through. We are already making plans to deal with these continued pressures in the years to come,” continued Mrs Clay.

“We are currently finalising plans to have approximately 400 additional, permanent primary school places ready this September to meet growing demand, at a cost of £5m. Whilst these places will be across the primary age range, 60 of these will be for reception-aged children. That’s the equivalent of 27 new primary classes built over the last five years.”

For the 2016/17 academic year 1,500 extra school places were created across Nottinghamshire at a cost of £11.5m which brings the total of additional primary school places created by the Council since 2013 to 5,500 at a total Council investment of nearly £70m.

Mrs Clay also assured late applicants that a school place would be available for their child in September 2017. The waiting list applies to all on-time unsuccessful applications, late applications and changes to preferences.

Unfortunately, popular schools will always be over-subscribed and whatever the admissions criteria are for those schools, the likelihood is that there will be some disappointed families.

Parents have right to appeal about their child’s school place and all appeals are wholly independent.