When Do Secondary School Places Come Out in 2024

In GCSE, General by Think Student EditorLeave a Comment

Many young students and their parents across the nation will be awaiting on any news from one or numerous secondary schools. The exact date at which you will receive the news of whether or not you have a reserved place at your desired secondary school or not depends on your specific circumstances. Whether you are applying to a private school, the time of year at which you apply, or applying to a school outside your catchment area.

The date when placement lists are generally released to the public is at some point during early Spring. This year that date is the 1st of March. This date is the same throughout all of the UK.

Keep reading on to find your own exact date and some more necessary information on secondary school places.

Do secondary school places come out on the same date every year?

Yes, as stated on the UK government website, this date remains constant every year. You should receive the letter or email from the secondary schools you have applied to by the night of 1st March. This letter or email will state whether you have been accepted or rejected by your chosen school. Find this date and further essential information published on the government website.

Most other significant dates in the admission process, including application deadline, also remain the same every year.

However, for private schools or any independent school whose dates are not decided by the state and government, the dates may vary. This information can be found by visiting by the specific website of the independent school in order to find the significant dates. Alternatively, you may choose to contact them by email or calling if the dates are not visible.

How are you notified of your place at secondary school?

A common expectation is that the news of an offer will always be received by email as most modern news is received. However, any formal and official rejection or offer will be sent to the address of residence as a letter. This address would be the one submitted on the application form. This letter may also be accompanied by a confirmation email, or an email requesting a response to the offer to the parent of the child.

If you receive a rejection letter it will explain how you can appeal the rejection. You can contact your local council in the unlikely case that you do not receive any news at all. This may be due to any address issues by either you or the school.

You will only receive a letter or email from a secondary school that you have applied to through the local council. Find out more on how to apply to secondary school by reading another one of our articles here.

How do you accept a secondary school offer?

When you have received your offer email and letter from your selected secondary school, you will be given a set date by which you must reply. This date will usually three to four weeks after the offers are sent out.

In order to confirm your place, the parents of the child will generally be required to reply to the email. They will have to fill in forms that will act as confirmation of the acceptance of the child’s place at the given school.

What happens if you get rejected from secondary school?

There are several options still open to you. It is important not to worry as secondary education is a requirement by law and your local council will do everything it can to ensure your child has a place at a nearby secondary school.

Waiting list for secondary school

If you didn’t get a place, you will be able to contact the school or your local council to get your child’s name added to a waiting list. You will not automatically place you on the list if you do not contact the school or local council. However, it may take a very long time for you to move up and be offered a place. In the meantime, you may choose to apply to other schools. Alternatively, you should contact the local council who will offer you a place at your closest school with remaining spots.

You can also place your child on a school’s waiting list despite their spot at another school. When their name moves up and a spot opens up, you will be able to accept this place and your child can transfer to the desired school. Find out the details at the UK Government School Admission page.

Can you appeal a rejection from a secondary school?

If your child has been rejected by their desired school, you will be able to appeal the rejection. This allows a chance for you to provide an explanation for why your child should be accepted in court. The letter which contains the rejection will explain how to prepare and apply for an appeal.

You will need to prepare your appeal by submitting information and evidence before the date of your hearing. On the day of the hearing, the admission authority will first explain why they turned down your application. You will then present your case of why your child should be accepted. The appeals panel will decide if your appeal must be upheld or not. Find out more about the details of this process here.

Can you still get into secondary school if you apply late?

Don’t worry! – you can still get a place. Due to circumstances such as having newly moved to an area, many people apply to school during, or after the start of, the academic year.

In this case you are required to contact your local council. You should do so even if you’re applying for schools in another council area or you’ve just moved to England. If you’re applying from another country, contact the local council in the area where you’re going to live. They will inform and assist you on the admission process.

You should also directly contact the Secondary School which you or your child desires to go to. This may help you get a place if there are limited spots open.

Can you change secondary school after the offers date?

It depends on your specific case. For example, many children and teenagers are required to move schools for the reason of a recent relocation of your house. In this case, the local council is legally obligated to assist you in placing your child at a nearby secondary school.

Another scenario is if, on the 1st of March, you received the news that you have been placed at a school below your first choice. In this case you will be required to attend that school. However, if you still wish to move to the other school, you must contact your local council and request to be placed on the waiting list. You are able to do this while attending a different school.

When your name moves up and off the waiting list you will be legally allowed to switch to you preferred school. However, this only applies to school you have already applied to before the application date. If you did not place a secondary school on your top preferred schools list, you will not be able to switch after offers have been sent out.

Alternatively, by directly contacting the school you wish to attend and discussing your situation you may be able to work out a solution.

Are private school admission dates the same as public secondary schools?

Independent schools are known for doing things differently, and separately from the state education system. The date at which Private Schools send out offers is much earlier than state schools. It occurs around Late January or Early February.

It is important to find out the specific information of the private school in order to ensure you get your application in on time, with the required additions. You are often required to write entrance exams and/or scholarship exams so ensure you make a list of all the important dates.

In order to find out more about the dates and application process for a particular private school, visit their website or contact the school directly. Your local council will be unable to provide any help or information on private, grammar, faith, boarding or free schools.

Are secondary school admissions on the same dates as primary schools?

No, unlike Secondary School, the date on which primary schools send offers is usually in April. This is later on in the Spring Term. The primary school term dates are always quite a bit before secondary school dates as a general rule.

However, the application deadline dates for primary school are much later. For primary schools it is in January whereas the secondary school deadlines are around October. The admission process is also a bit different and the the legally required school starting age of your child must also be considered.

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