Wednesday 22 May 2024
13.8 C

Council ‘sympathises’ with residents who missed out on preferred school place

A Nottinghamshire County Council cabinet member has told parents and families whose children missed out on their preferred schools they can appeal the decision.

However, she said that this affects only a “tiny percentage” of families across the county, with almost all applications given a preferred school.

The Conservative-led authority wrote to parents last month as part of the annual results of applications for families’ preferred primary schools.

It confirmed 99.6 per cent of children received a place at one of their parents’ preferred schools and 96.3 per cent received admission specifically to the first preference.

This means about 8,030 out of the 8,062 applications that were received on time received a preferred school, with 7,767 going to the first-choice site.

- Advertisement -

However, the council’s cabinet member responsible for education has issued a message to the 32 applicants that did not receive a preferred school.

Councillor Tracey Taylor (Con), cabinet member for children and families, told a full council meeting there are numerous reasons for these decisions.

But she says there are also several options for these affected families if they want to challenge the decisions for September 2023.

Speaking in the full council meeting on Thursday (May 11), she said: “We, of course, follow a statutory procedure but I do sympathise with those families who do not receive the offer they would ideally want.

“In those cases, the problem is not a shortage of places in an area but an excess demand for particular schools.

“The most important thing when parents make their choices is that they check the eligibility criteria, rather than making assumptions about that criteria.

“Sometimes, the myths about what’s possible with the statutory process don’t actually match the facts.

“I would emphasise parents are encouraged to exercise their right to select a full slate of preferences to maximise their chance of getting one of those preferred schools.

“It’s only a tiny percentage who are not offered one of their preferred places and I’d reiterate anyone who is disappointed with the offer this year can enter the appeals process.

“An independent panel of three or more people will hear the appeal and reach a decision in line with the school admissions appeal code.”

After receiving the offer from the council on April 17, parents had until May 1 to accept their offer.

The authority says further advice on admissions and appeals can be accessed from its online school admission hub.

•  Nottingham man jailed for over six years for Tweets encouraging terrorism

•  Outgoing council chairman raised £27,000 for Ukrainian charities

Follow The Wire on TikTok, Facebook, X, Instagram. Send your story to or via WhatsApp on 0115 772 0418