IT can be a stressful time for parents waiting to find out if their child has secured a spot in their primary school of choice.
Here is what you need to know about the admissions process for your child – and what to do if they’ve missed out.
If your child doesn’t get their first choice, don’t worry as you have a few options.Credit: Getty
What happens if my child doesn’t get a primary school place?
The national offer day for primary schools is April 19, 2022.
It’s a nervy time for parents, especially you’ve already found a school you love.
But though there’s every chance they’ll get in, it’s worth doing a bit of homework on alternative options if they don’t.
If your child misses out on a place, contact your local council and ask if there are any spots available.
They are obliged to find another school for your child to attend if they don’t get a place in ones you’ve applied to.
Usually this will be your nearest school that has available space.
You can also add your child’s name to a waiting list as the school’s admissions authority has to keep one open for the first term of the academic year, as a minimum.
If they’ve already been offered a place elsewhere, this won’t prevent you from getting them on a waiting list.
What happens if my child doesn’t get their first choice for primary school?
If your child doesn’t get their first choice, don’t worry as you have a few options.
You can accept another offer from a school that has enough space to accommodate them.
Your child can be added to the waiting lists for schools of your choice. Though this might not sound promising, you may find that places in your favourite school will become available as the circumstances of other children’s families change.
Or you can appeal the authority’s decision to reject your application.
How can I appeal?
Should you get a letter refusing your child a place at your chosen school, don’t despair, as you can appeal the decision.
You are entitled to at least 20 school days from the day the decision letter is sent by the school’s admissions authority.
Evidence must be provided by the deadline set to support your appeal.
Appeals are most likely to succeed if they’re backed up by evidence or a letter from a professional, such as a social worker.
Your appeal will take place in front of an independent panel who will decide if the admission criteria of your chosen school was followed correctly.
More information on school terms dates and holidays is available here.