Nursery and school admissions: what happens if your child doesn't get a place?

Nursery and school admissions: what happens if your child doesn't get a place?

From this point onwards, parents will be getting very anxious about their child getting nursery and primary school places, as they wait for the letter through the door.


It will either be a huge relief or a massive disappointment as parents find out whether their  applications have been successful. If unfortunately you miss out on the place that you want, what happens next. We’ve put together a list of questions and answers that will help parents if they choose to go through the appeals process.

Don’t forget, you have a legal right to appeal against a school place decision. After you have received a written notification of the decision made, it should tell you a date you can appeal the decision by. In some cases and with certain school you can have the option of being out on a waiting list. What happens if your child doesn't get a school or nursery place?


Below is some information you may find useful if you find that you do not get a place at your chosen school.


School admissions - appealing against a decision


You will find details of how to make an appeal in the local authority's admission letter outlining your offer. The letter will also specify a deadline that you must stick to if you want to appeal. In certain areas, you may be able to submit your appeal online.


My child hasn't been offered a place at his/her preferred school - what next?

If your child has not been allocated a school place you will need to contact the admissions team at your local authority. They can let you know which schools have places available.


When do I find out where my child has been offered a school place?

Your local authority can give you information on which school has places available.


How does the appeal process work?

Appeals are heard by an independent appeal panel of three to five members of the public. You can only make one appeal for each school that does not offer a place. If more than one school declines to admit your child, you can make separate appeals.


Infant classes

For infant classes of five, six and seven year olds the number of pupils is normally limited by law to a maximum of 30.

Admission applications can be refused if all of a school’s infant classes have reached their legal limit. In this type of appeal, the panel is only allowed to look at whether:

-the child would have been offered a place if the admission arrangements had been properly implemented

-a place would have been offered if the arrangements had not been contrary to criteria set out in the School Admissions Code

-the decision to refuse admission was not one which a reasonable admission authority would have made in the circumstances of the case


What happens if my appeal is unsuccessful?

The decision

The panel's decision is binding - both on you and on the school's admission authority - and can only be overturned by the courts.

The panel will let you and the admission authority know by post within seven days. If your appeal is successful your child will be offered a place at school. If you are unsuccessful you can put your child's name on a waiting list.


School Admissions Code

The School Admissions Code says that children in public care must be given top priority. Examples of some other criteria that might be used are whether:

-your child has a brother or sister who will be at the school when they start there

-you live in the area served by the school

-you or your child has a disability which makes travel to a distant school difficult

-(for religious or faith schools), your child or family is of the particular religion or faith served by the school. Parents may need to fill out a separate religious application form provided by the school. Usually the Vicar or Priest is expected to sign the form to verify what’s been said.

-(for secondary schools) your child attends a linked primary school

-your home is close to the school


Find out more…


Visit the Directgov website for information about nursery and school applications and appeals


Visit the gurgle education section


Talk to other Gurgle mums in the latest nursery and schools ‘chat’.

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily entertainment updates.

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