Catchment areas primary school

(9 Posts)
Rockinboppin Tue 27-Sep-16 14:59:06

Hi guys. Ok am I the only one who is struggling to understand how this all works??!! I'm baffled! I am booked into all sorts of open days but no idea if I'm being realistic. I'm not to thrilled about many of our local options so wondering how do I find out if it's realistic to apply to a school further away.. I am on the border of three boroughs- can I apply for schools in every borough?? Thanks for any help anyone can offer!!

tiggytape Tue 27-Sep-16 15:17:15

You can apply for schools in any borough
You use the same form for all school applications though (not one form per borough)
You will have 6 choices in total.
The best advice is:
1st: the school you really like above all others even if the chances of a place are low
2nd, 3rd, 4th: Other schools that you like or that are O.K in the true order that you like them. Chances of a place should play no part in the order you list these schools
5th: An O.K school that isn't ideal but that you stand an O.K chance of getting a place at (maybe you were just inside the last distance offered last year for example)
6th: A school you are almost certain to be offered because it is so local - even if you really don't like it at all (an awful school 2 minutes away beats a worse school 2 buses away and that is what you risk getting allocated if you don't put one school on your list that you are almost certain to qualify for)

If you want to know which schools you would have qualified for in past years, you can ask the schools for the last distance offered or you can look on your council's website

Toomanycats99 Tue 27-Sep-16 15:23:44

Agree exactly tiggy. Especially no6. Exactly my view. Loads of people don't seem to thi k that way though!

Rockinboppin Tue 27-Sep-16 15:34:13

Thanks so much. Fantastic advice.

Nickittai Tue 27-Sep-16 19:23:07

I agree,we live very close (0.3miles) to an excellent school but we're not in catchment area :-(.The only school we're certain to get a place is everybody's worst nightmare(despite of a good Ofsted and rumours it's slowly improving it has a bad reputation).It is still a walking distance (about 15min).I was determined not to list this school but I've changed my mind since I read that some children didn't get a place at any of the chosen schools and had to wait to be allocated a place elsewhere(often far away).
There are other very good schools in our area (within 1mile distance)but there's a very little chance of getting a place(either church schools and/or oversubscribed).I applied for couple of schools a little further away after looking at the statistics from the previous years.We seem to have a better chance of getting into a school that's 2 miles away than the one that's 0.3miles away.It's crazy really.

Nickittai Tue 27-Sep-16 19:30:45

I'd also suggest you look at the previous years admissions data and consider the distance from the schools and how realistic it is to get a place(how far out are you).

Paddingtonthebear Tue 27-Sep-16 19:34:11

We only get three choices. Well, preferences not choices.

I've put my catchment school first then the next two nearest schools. All three are routinely over subscribed in catchment so i don't know what will actually happen and where we will end up. I can't see us getting into the second or third choice schools even though they are next nearest to us. Hoping we get the catchment one.

tiggytape Tue 27-Sep-16 20:01:47

We seem to have a better chance of getting into a school that's 2 miles away than the one that's 0.3miles away.It'szy really.
Yes - that's sometimes the case. If you live just outside the normal 'last distance offered' for a local school that everyone wants, it can be much harder to get a place than at a school 2 miles away that either has 90 places in reception or is less oversubscribed. It does pay to investigate all the schools in your area if you can (not visit them all but look up whether you'd have qualified in previous years).

We only get three choices. Well, preferences not choices.
You are quite right - they are only ever preferences not choices. If you list only schools which you do not meet the criteria for, the council is forced to allocate you the nearest school with an available space after all other applicants have been placed. This is why sometimes people end up being sent quite far from home.

Hopefully you feel fairly certain of meeting the criteria for the catchment school or getting lucky with one of the other two? However if all three of them are very iffy, it might be worth looking at schools further from home (which aren't as far or aren't as any that you think you might get if your 3 preferences cannot be met) and listing a safer option as your third choice.

Paddingtonthebear Wed 28-Sep-16 07:54:34

No they are all very good schools. Hence why oversubscribed. Hoping we get it in to our first choice on catchment basis, hopefully there won't be too many in catchment siblings bumping us further down the queue envy

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