Top marks on school places

This Is Wiltshire: Top marks on school places Top marks on school places

SWINDON Council is continuing to ensure that nearly all pupils are offered a place at their first- choice secondary school.

This year, the council’s Schools Admissions Team received 2,274 on-time applications for secondary school places with 94.2 per cent matched with their first preference, slightly down on last year’s figure of 97.6 per cent.

There were 110 more Swindon pupils applying for places than last year.

Parents could request a place in up to three schools, and 99.1 per cent were offered one of their three preferences, compared to 99.7 per cent last year.

Priority for places was determined by the admission criteria applied by the schools themselves.

Letters and emails were sent out to parents yesterday informing them of the school placement offers.

The deadline for applying for secondary school places was October 31 last year.

Councillor Fionuala Foley, cabinet member for children’s services, said: “We are continuing to post very high figures when it comes to matching pupils with their preferred secondary schools.

“It doesn’t happen by accident – the council’s children’s services team work very hard throughout the year to assess where future demand for school places is likely to occur.”

Applicants who submitted their preferences after the deadline were offered a place at the next nearest school with a place available at that time, if their preferred school was oversubscribed at that point.

However, the admissions team have been able to offer most late applications their preferred school.

The School Admissions Team will also be offering primary and infant to junior school places for September 2014 on April 16.

Parents will be sent a letter informing them of the result of their application on that date.

NEW COLLEGE’S THROUGH SCHOOL BID

  • New College is looking to create a through school, which caters for children aged four to 18, to help meet the chronic shortage of places.
  • It is expected that by 2016, when it is hoped the school will open, more than 200 families will have to send their children to a school outside of the area due to the increasing population.
  • By 2018 this could have risen to as much as 900.
  • For the bid to be considered, between 350 and 500 signatures will be needed, both from parents who would be interested in sending their child to the secondary school, and from students who would go to the sixth form.

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