Leeds primary school places: How many children missed out one of their five choices?

Leeds parents have received primary school place offers for their children today, with council figures revealing almost nine in 10 were allocated their first choice.

By Georgina Morris
Friday, 16th April 2021, 4:45 pm

A total of 9,178 children due to start school in September have been allocated a place at one of their top five preferred schools, but there was disappointment for 155 children who missed out on any of their choices and have been offered an alternative school.

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Leeds City Council said 98.3 per cent of applicants had been offered a place at one of their preferred schools - up 2.2 per cent on the previous year.

Coun Jonathan Pryor, executive member for learning, skills and employment. Picture: Bruce Rollinson

A decline in the birth rate and a reduction in movement in the area is said to have eased demand for reception class places for the next academic year, meaning a number of schools still have vacancies available.

Coun Jonathan Pryor, executive member for learning, skills and employment, said: "Choosing a school for a child is one of the most important decisions parents and carers will make and we are pleased that we have been able to offer 98.3 per cent of families one of their five preferences this year.

"We understand how stressful it can be when a family is not happy with the place they have been allocated and we will do everything we can to work with anyone in this situation."

All of the 155 children who missed out on one of their preferred schools have been offered a place at a school within 1.3 miles of their home address, with 137 offered a place less than a mile from home.

Families are recommended to always include the school where they receive catchment or nearest priority as one of their preferences and to make sure they use all five preferences to have the best chance of being offered a preferred or local school.

Parents now need to accept their offer of a school place as soon as possible by contacting the school directly. Those who wish to decline their offer must first make sure they have another offer or a plan for how their child will receive education.

They can also ask to be added to the waiting lists at schools where they have not been offered a place and should do this by April 30.

If parents wish to appeal, they must submit their appeal form by May 14 to ensure any appeal is heard before the summer holidays. Visit www.leeds.gov.uk/offerday for more details.

Who got what places and how does it compare to last year?

According to council data, 8,333 children were given their first preference compared - the equivalent of 89.2 per cent. This is an increase from the 87 per cent last year.

A further 565 children - or six per cent got their second choice. This is the same proportion as second places last year.

Some 180 children were given their third preference. This represented two per cent of applications, up from 1.7 per cent last year.

Another 64 children - or one per cent - got their fourth preference. Last year fewer than one per cent were given their fourth choice.

Fifth preference schools were allocated to 36 children. This was fewer than one per cent - the same as in 2020.

Alternative places were offered to 155 children - the equivalent of 1.7 per cent. This is down from 2.9 per cent last year.

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