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School is one of the most important parts of your child’s life, and there is a lot to consider when deciding which school you’d like them to go to. As well as giving them a place to learn, school helps them to grow and prepare for adult life, and also provides a safe place for them to spend time with friends under the supervision of trusted adults.

Whether you’re getting ready to apply for a primary school place or thinking about the right secondary school for your child, it’s important to do your research first. When you apply, you can select up to six preferences and we strongly advise you to find at least three suitable schools for your child.

There's plenty of practical advice and guidance in our Applying to secondary school video (YouTube) and our Applying to primary school video (YouTube).

A good place to start is by checking the priority area school (similar to catchment area) or our useful search tool for your address.

Nearest/priority area school calculator

Things to consider

Which schools are in your local area?

Use our find a school app to find schools local to you.

  • A good place to start is by checking the priority area school (similar to catchment area) for your address.
  • Please note that some schools do not have a priority area.
  • Your priority area may change if your child’s address changes at any point during the admissions process.

What do you know about these schools?

You’ll need to find out as much as possible about schools, including their academic results, pastoral care, facilities and admissions criteria. The get information about schools website has information about each school, including the number of places they have available.

It’s also worth doing an online search of each possible school as well as taking a look at their own websites.

The best way to get a sense of the school and how it will meet your child’s needs is to go to an open day or visit the school at another time. You can find the details of their open days on their websites.

You might also find the tips and suggestions in our School Guide helpful.

Is it practical?

Consider whether your preferred schools are practical on a day-to-day basis. How would your child travel to and from school? Would you need childcare, either before or after school? What would the costs of travel or childcare be?

How might each school meet your child’s needs?

Your circumstances will be different to other families. Talking to your child and their current teacher or care worker at their nursery or school could help you determine what matters most to you and what is best for your child.

If you are worried that your child has specific needs, get in touch with the school(s) directly, as they will be able to talk through your concerns and explain the support that might be available.

Most children with Special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) will be educated in their local mainstream school.

What is the likelihood of you getting a place?

Some schools receive many more applications than they have places available.

To increase your chances of getting a place at a preferred school, we recommend that you include at least three schools where you have a good chance of being accepted on your application form.

If all of the schools that you include are over-subscribed, the oversubscription criteria will be used, and your application will be considered against other children who have also applied to that school.

If you are unsuccessful in getting a place at any of your selected schools, then you’ll be offered a place at another school in Warwickshire. This might be a school you don’t know much about, it could be some distance away, and you might feel it does not meet your child’s needs. The admissions criteria for each school will tell you how they decide which children to admit. You can find a link to the criteria under each school name on the find a school app.

It will show you the lowest criteria of applicants to which they were able to offer a place, and the furthest distance between the school and an offered place. Whilst there is no guarantee that this data will be the same this year, it may help you assess the likelihood of your child getting a place, based on their home address and where they are in the admissions criteria

Making an application

Once you’ve done your research, you’re ready to apply for a school place. Find out more about the process for applying to either a primary school or applying to a secondary school .

If you have an email address, the easiest way to apply for a school place is online.

Apply for a school place

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