Tes is reporting that almost one in five pupils missed out on their first choice of secondary school this year, new statistics from the Department for Education reveal.
The statistics show that in 2019, 80.9 per cent of pupils were offered a place at their first preference school compared to 82.1 per cent in 2018.
But there are wide regional variations in the chances of pupils getting a place at their first choice secondary – with just 54.8 per cent of pupils in Lambeth doing so, compared to 98.4 per cent of those applying in Northumberland.
There were 604,496 applications for secondary school in 2019 – an increase of 3.7 per cent on 2018.
But at primary school, the number of pupils applying for places has largely stabilised, with 608,957 applications received in 2019, compared to 608,180 in 2018.
Nick Gibb, schools minister, said: “This means that, despite rising pupil numbers and the highest number of applications at secondary level for twelve years, the vast majority of parents sending their children to school this September received one of their top three preferences of either primary or secondary school.”
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