Hundreds of children miss out on first choice secondary school in Nottinghamshire

Hundreds of Nottinghamshire children missed out on getting their first-choice secondary school place this year, figures reveal.

Nottinghamshire County Council data showed 93.4 per cent of reception-age children got their first-choice primary school offered in 2021/22 – up from 92.4 per cent the previous academic year.

However, for secondary schools, that number dropped to 91.7 per cent.

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Coun Tracey Taylor, Nottinghamshire Council children and young people’s committee chairman. Picture: Tracey Whitefoot.

In the recent academic year, there were 8,681 applications from residents in Nottinghamshire – and more than 200 children had none of their four preferences met, the data showed.

Councillor Tracey Taylor, council children and young people’s committee chairman, said: “Although the number of parents receiving an offer for their first preference secondary school for admission in September 2021 dropped slightly on previous years, in Nottinghamshire, most pupils continue to gain places at their first choice.

“More than 90 per cent of Nottinghamshire children were offered their parents’ first preference secondary academy for this September, with 96.9 per cent of families offered one of their preferred academies. This is similar to the previous year, 96.9 per cent.

“All secondary schools in Nottinghamshire are own admission authority schools and are responsible for setting their own admission oversubscription criteria, including the published admission number – the number of children the school can admit.

“It cannot be stressed strongly enough that parents should check carefully the oversubscription criteria for the schools they prefer, list four preferences on their application – at least one of which their child has a strong chance of getting a place based the oversubscription criteria – and to ensure they apply on time.”