The Mail is reporting that families across the country are set to be disappointed next week when ‘up to half’ are expected to miss out on their first choice of secondary school in some areas.
Head teachers are facing an escalating places crisis filtering through from primaries which has been caused by a baby boom fuelled by migration.
Ministers have known about the impending problem for many years but councils estimate tens of thousands of extra secondary places will still be needed by 2020.
Figures released yesterday suggest a rising numbers of secondary schools are struggling to keep up with demand, with some only able to take children living minutes away from the school gates.
Almost half of secondary schools in England are now oversubscribed, and the numbers are increasing.
The findings come just days before 11-year-olds across the country learn what school they will be attending from September, on what is known as National Offer Day…
The data, obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, indicates that 47 per cent of secondaries were oversubscribed in 2015 – equivalent to more than 1,500 schools – and this is up from 43 per cent in 2014…
Official figures show that 84.2 per cent of children got their first choice of secondary school last year, down one percentage point from 85.2 per cent in 2014.
However, in London almost a third of children missed out on their first choice and in some boroughs it was half.
There was a 2.3 per cent increase in secondary school applications in 2015, the government data shows…
The headline suggestion that half of the pupils will miss out seems to be an exaggeration as the report suggests this will only be the case in the most oversubscribed of areas.
That said, it’s clearly getting crowded out there.
What impact are you seeing from the increasing numbers coming through to secondary level?
More fundamentally, how much does it actually matter if parents don’t get their preferred place as long as they get a local place? Has the perceived right to choose gone too far?
Let us know what you think…
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