How applications are processed

The Schools Admission Code requires that applications are processed under an ‘equal preference system’. This means that applications are ranked against the oversubscription criteria in the admission policy of each school named on the application. The order in which you name your preferred schools is not taken into account. In fact, schools are not told where they were ranked in your list of preferences.

How it works
  • You can name up to three schools on your application, in order of preference
  • Your child is added to a list for each of the schools you have named. Each schools list is then ranked in accordance with the published admission criteria for that school to determine whether they are able to offer a place
  • If only one of your preferred schools can offer a place, you will be allocated a place at that school
  • If your child qualifies for a place at more than one school, the one ranked highest on your application will be allocated
  • If none of your preferred schools can offer a place, you will be allocated a place at the catchment school (if places remain) or the nearest school with a place available. You will also be advised of the arrangements for placing our child on the waiting list and your right of appeal
Example 1

You apply for three schools in the following preference order:

1st preference School A
2nd preference School B
3rd preference School C

All three of your preferred schools are able to offer a place. You are therefore allocated a place at School A. Your second and third preferences are discarded on the basis that you were allocated your highest preference school.

Example 2

You apply for three schools in the following preference order:

1st preference School A
2nd preference School B
3rd preference School C

School A is unable to offer a place but School B and School C can offer. You are therefore allocated a place at School B. School C is discarded because you were offered one of your higher preference schools. You are refused a place at School A and advised of the arrangements for placing your child on the waiting list and your right of appeal.