It’s time to apply for your child’s reception or junior/primary school place

09 November 2020

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If your child turns 5 years old between 1 September 2021 and 31 August 2022, it’s time to start thinking about making their school application.

Parents of children living in Nottinghamshire can apply for their child’s first school or transfer from infant to a junior/primary school from now until 15 January 2021.

Nottinghamshire County Council is urging parents to list 4 preferences and make sure they have submitted their application by the deadline.  Applications received after the closing date, including changes of preference, are considered as late applications and will be processed after all on-time applications.

Listing 4 school preferences gives parents for the best chance of getting your child into one of your preferred schools.

The easiest way to apply for a place is online, but parents who do not have internet access can telephone 0300 500 80 80 to apply. Parents who apply online will be able to log in to their account on National Offer Day, 16 April 2021, to view the outcome of their application. All other applicants will have to wait a few days for a letter sent by second class post on National Offer Day.

If your child attends a school’s foundation unit, nursery class or early years’ group, it does not guarantee that they will get a place at the school in reception. Additionally, if your child is in year 2 at infant school, you still need to apply for their junior or primary school place.

Chairman of the County Council’s Children and Young People’s Committee, Councillor Philip Owen, said: “It is important that all parents are aware they must make an application, even if their child is already attending a nursery.

“Children do not automatically transfer from nursery to full-time school, or from infant school to a junior or primary school. 

“If it is your first child who is starting in reception, we want to make sure that you have all the information you need to make an informed decision which will give you the best chance of getting your child into your preferred school.

“Last year, over 98% of families who applied for a primary school place on time were offered one of their preferred schools.”

Parents of children living in Nottinghamshire will need to apply through Nottinghamshire County Council, even if they wish to apply for schools in other local authority areas such as Nottingham City or Derbyshire.

The council’s website has information to help with the application process, including ‘Admissions to Schools: Guide for Parents 2021-2022’ which contains lots of useful information and advice. 

Parents must also remember to:

Use all four preferences – there is never a guarantee that a preference can be met, but parents should make sure that they use all four of their preferences rather than just making one preference and limiting their options. This way they are more likely to be offered a place at a school they are happy for their child to attend.

Check the admission oversubscription criteria – parents are urged to include at least one school where their child will have high priority within the school’s admission oversubscription criteria. Information about the criteria can also be found on the Council’s website.

Other relevant information – when applying, parents also need to make sure that they mention any information that is relevant to their application, and which may affect how the admission oversubscription criteria are applied. They should also tell the Council if they are moving house as this may affect how their application is considered. It is important to read the relevant sections in ‘Admissions to schools: Guide for parents 20212022’. 

For any enquiries about how to apply for a school place, please contact 0300 500 80 80 or visit

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