Thursday 16 April 2015

Thousands of primary pupils will be going to their school of choice this year – as admissions results reveal over a 97 per cent success rate.

School admissions outcomes for entrance into reception from this September show a higher number of children have been offered places at preferred schools than last year. In total 97.01 per cent of parents have been offered one of their three preferred schools. This is up nearly two per cent from last year.

Sheffield, like cities across the country, has seen extra demand for primary school places, largely driven by an increase in the birth rate. This increase has had an effect on primary schools right across the city.

Sheffield City Council has a good record of planning places including adding a further 4,500 additional places to local schools to meet parental preference despite a period of rapid and sustained population growth over the last few years.

The council has managed to increase capacity by commissioning new schools, including the new through school at Don Valley which is due to open this September, as well as creating additional places at exiting schools across the city.

On top of this the council is still actively looking ahead to areas where there is still a need for more places with the goal of enabling all families to get a school place in their local area.

Jayne Ludlam, Executive Director of Children, Young People and Families said: “All our children should have a great start to life – that is their entitlement, and a significant way of achieving this is to make sure they have access to the best possible education.

“This includes having the chance to attend good or outstanding schools in their local area. As a council we are committed to supporting every school to be a great school which give our children, young people and families learning for life. Over the last few years we have been dealing with an unprecedented baby boom here in the city, which has placed enormous pressure on our local school places. However, we are aware of the issues and have been working hard with schools to address this pressure and we will continue to do so in coming years.

“Parents told us this is what they wanted after pupils missed out on catchment places last year. We have listened and we have acted on this. We hope more parents than ever before will this year be left satisfied with the choices they have been given.”

She added whilst it has not been possible to offer all children a place at their first choice school at this time, there is still a process for reconsideration at appeal which can change the final allocation for September.

The Council also maintains a waiting list and will work closely with the families involved to ensure that they are supported through this process.

In total 6,225 parents will receive notification tomorrow (April 16) of which school their child has been allocated.

This is the Sheffield position for admissions to reception September 2015:
• First preferences met 89.69 per cent (5,583)
• Second preferences met 6.1 per cent (380)
• Third preferences met 1.22 per cent (76)
• No preferences met 2.99 per cent (186)

• Overall 97.01 per cent of pupils were allocated one of their three preferences.

Those pupils who were not allocated a place at one of their preferred schools have been allocated an alternative school. This will be their catchment school if they had not applied for it and there were still places or the nearest school with places available.

In comparison figures for 2014 were as follows:

• First preferences met 87.75 per cent (5,475)
• Second preferences met 5.98 per cent (373)
• Third preferences met 2.1 per cent (131)
• No preferences met 4.17 per cent (260)

• Overall 95.8 per cent of pupils were allocated one of their three preferences last year. Again those pupils not allocated one of their preferred schools, were allocated an alternative as described above.