Hi - my partner and I are both in a bit of transitional phase in our jobs at the moment and we could be either in London or Oxford or Norwich come the time our daughter starts reception (september 2014) BUT we probably won't know where we will be before the deadline for applications in Jan 2014. So I was wondering if anyone knows whether it is possible to apply for reception places in more than one location eg. would I be able to apply to norwich, oxford and the relevant London councils?
As far as I know you have to provide evidence of your permanent address at time of application. So many people try to fiddle the system to get a particular school they are quite strict on it. You'll just have to wait until you are settled somewhere definite and make a late application then and hope you get somewhere good!
Yes you could apply to Norwich and Oxford, but you must make your application through your LEA at the time of application wherever that is. If you're in London and apply for an Oxford school obviously you'll be pretty low on distance criteria, but if the school isn't oversubscribed you'll still be offered a place if its your first choice!
Wherever you are living in Jan 2014, that is the council that will deal with your application. You cannot apply directly to 3 different councils
You will get 5 or 6 choices on your form. You can choose to list 2 London, 2 Oxford and 2 Norwich schools and your local council will pass on your details for you.
What you can't do is apply to 6 schools in London, 6 in Norwich and 6 in Oxford. And you can't submit your application form to London if you are living in Oxford.
As titchy says - what this means realistically is that your chances of getting into a school in a county different to the one you are living in by January 2014 is pretty low because people living closer will get priority.
You can get around this by identifying an undersubscribed school. If the school has less applicants than places, it will take anyone who applies even if they live miles away on the date of application. In rural areas, this can work well. In urban areas, it might mean choosing a less popular (so less good) school to ensure you get an offer.
Also bear in mind that you will only get one offer. So you might end up with an offer for Norwich but end up in Oxford. You won't get one offer from each area.
Realistically, you may be looking at in-year admissions. If you know where you will be but aren't there yet (e.g. know you will be in Norwich but are still in London at application date) you can do as TiggyTape describes.