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School Places: 97.2% of Rushcliffe parents get a place at one of their preferred school choices

Today (Friday, 1 March) thousands of Nottinghamshire parents and carers will discover the outcome of their child’s secondary school applications for places starting in autumn 2024.

The vast majority, more than 98%, of the 9,446 on-time applications for September 2024 admissions in Nottinghamshire will be receiving a place at one of their preferred schools, increasing from last year’s figure of 97.1%.

Despite the large volume of applications, more than 91% of children are being offered their parents’ first preference ( up from 89.6% in 2023 ) with just under 6% offered their second preference, meaning nearly 97% have been offered either their first or second preference, also increasing from last year.

This year, 92% of families applied online and will receive their offer by email or by logging into their school admissions account on offer day to get details of their school offer and instructions on what to do next. Other applicants that provided an email address will also be sent an email on offer day. Letters to the remaining applicants will be posted second class on Friday, 1 March and these are expected to arrive in the coming days.

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County Hall

Councillor Sam Smith, Cabinet Member for Education and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, at Nottinghamshire County Council told The Wire:

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“It is fantastic that that the vast majority of children are getting a place at one of their preferred schools and that this continues to increase despite the challenges. A lot of work goes into the admissions process and the aim is to offer a preferred school wherever possible.

“To meet local need, many schools across the county have offered additional places, over their published admission numbers and I’d like to thank everyone who has been involved. The council’s admissions team has continued to work incredibly hard to deliver even better results this year.

“We are committed to providing sufficient high quality school places to meet the increasing demand for places as more families choose to live and work here in Nottinghamshire.

“I hope those about to move up to secondary school can now enjoy their last few months at primary and junior school before they begin the next phase of their education journey.”

Rushcliffe

Cllr Smith explained that the authority negotiates with schools to try to get more children into places over and above the published roll numbers, where possible the aim is to increase the published roll numbers permanently to avoid the need for negotiations in the future.

On Rushcliffe Cllr Smith said:

‘We’ve invested £27m in Rushcliffe Spencer Academy which will create over 500 extra places,  £2.5 million in South Wolds Academy for 130 places and £2.3 m in South Nottinghamshire Academy for 150 places.”

‘In Rushcliffe, 97.2% of parents have been offered one of their four preferences, one difficulty is that of the remaining 3% – 76% ( of the 3% ) only put down one preference where 16% ( of the 3% ) requested four preferences. It’s really important to always request the four preferences.’

When parents and carers receive their offer, they have a number of options:

• Accept the school place – by 15 March.

• If their child has been refused a place at a preferred school, they will already be on the school’s waiting list.

• If they are not satisfied with the offer they have received, they are advised to contact the school for which they have a preference for information about how to lodge an appeal.

• Important: parents are advised to accept their child’s offer, even if they would prefer a different school and plan to appeal, until they have confirmed alternative plans for their child’s education.

The council follows the government’s school admissions code, which ensures that all school places for maintained schools and academies are allocated and offered in an open and fair way.

For anyone who submitted a late application or made changes to their application after the October deadline, those applications will start to be processed from Monday, 18 March and parents informed after 27 March.

For further advice, parents can visit School admissions hub | Nottinghamshire County Council

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