Pupils securing their first choice secondary school place falls

Number of pupils securing their first choice secondary school place falls compared to last year as a FIFTH miss out

  • Nearly a fifth of children have missed out on their top choice secondary school
  • But this rose to more than two in five pupils in some areas of England, data said
  • The number of applications to secondary schools in England rose 0.8 per cent

The proportion of pupils gaining places at their first-choice secondary school has plummeted, figures show.

Nearly a fifth of children have missed out on their top choice of institution, rising to more than two in five pupils in some areas of England, according to data from the Department for Education (DfE).

It comes as the number of applications to secondary schools in England rose by 0.8 per cent to just over 605,200.

Nearly a fifth of children have missed out on their top choice of institution, rising to more than two in five pupils in some areas of England, according to data from the Department for Education (file photo)

It comes as the number of applications to secondary schools in England rose by 0.8 per cent to just over 605,200

Figures show that 81.1 per cent of children starting secondary school this September received an offer from their first-choice school, down from 82.2 per cent last year.

Slough had the lowest proportion of families getting their top choice at just 56.1 per cent, followed by Hammersmith and Fulham (57.3 per cent) and Richmond upon Thames (59.8 per cent) in London.

The DfE said the figure will have been affected by the delay to the selective school tests due to the pandemic.

Figures show that 81.1 per cent of children starting secondary school this September received an offer from their first-choice school, down from 82.2 per cent last year

The DfE said the figure will have been affected by the delay to the selective school tests due to the pandemic

In some local authorities – including Slough – parents could name selective schools on the application form when their child may not have reached the standard required for an offer.

The statistics show that the proportion of children securing their preferred primary school has increased, from 90.2 per cent in 2020 to 91.8 per cent this year.

The number of applications to primary schools in England has dropped by 5.1 per cent to around 580,700.

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