Time is running out to apply for your child’s reception or junior/primary school place

07 January 2020

School applications open

Parents of children in Nottinghamshire are being reminded that they only have until Wednesday 15 January 2020 to apply for their child’s reception school place or transfer from infant to junior/primary schools.

To help give the best chance of getting a child into a preferred school, Nottinghamshire County Council is urging parents to select four school preferences before the deadline, so that their application can be considered alongside all other on-time applications.

Any applications made after 15 January, including any changes of school preferences, are considered as late and will be processed after all on-time applications, so there is an increased risk that your child may not be placed in your preferred school if all the places are already allocated.

Chairman of the County Council’s Children and Young People’s Committee, Councillor Philip Owen, said:

“If your child will be five years old between 1 September 2020 and 31 August 2021, time is running out for you to apply for a reception year place and to decide which schools to include on your application. 

“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 one of their preferred schools.

“The good news, however, is that last year, over 98.9% of families who applied for a primary school place on time were offered one of their preferred schools.”

Parents who apply online will be able to view their decision online on what’s known as National Offer Day, 16 April 2020, whereas other applicants will have to wait a few days for a letter to be sent by second class post.

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.


Parents 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 www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/admissions has information to help with the application process, including ‘Admissions to Schools: Guide for Parents 2020-2021’ which contains lots of useful information and advice. 

To increase the chances of parents getting their child into one of their preferred schools, parents are being reminded 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.
  • Moving house? This may affect how an application is considered so ensure it is mentioned on the application.
  • Read the relevant sections in ‘Admissions to schools: Guide for parents 2020-2021’.  For any enquiries about how to apply for a school place, please contact 0300 500 80 80 or visit www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/admissions

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