Secondary school applications

Information for parents and carers of children due to transfer to secondary school

Offer letters are sent by first-class post on 3 March 2014.

Those who applied online will also receive an email and/or can login to view the result of their online application and respond from 3 March 2014 onwards.

Parents guide

Making the change from primary to secondary school can be a daunting time, both for children and parents. Our Transition to secondary school guide (pdf format, 1.1Mb) gives advice on how to prepare for the transition. There is also an available recourse for the secondary schools guide Moving on (pdf format, 1.35Mb).

Late applications

To apply after 31 October you need to print and complete a secondary application form (pdf format, 315Kb) as soon as possible. You should also explain why you were unable to make the application on time.

What if my application is late?

If you submit a late application (received after 31 October 2013 but before 18 March 2014), your child is far less likely to receive an offer of a place in one your preferred schools. This is because we are required to deal with on-time applications first. We start considering late applications in March and will write to you in May to let you know at which school your child can be offered a place.

How do I apply? 

See the admissions process (pdf format, 80 Kb) for full details before you start your secondary school application.

Important things to remember when applying

  • it is the responsibility of parents/carers to apply for a school place
  • you can list three different schools in order of preference. We strongly advise you to use all three preferences
  • we advise you to enter your catchment school as one of your preferences
  • if your application is late, you are far less likely to get a place at one of your preferred schools

Key dates 

Timetable for school admissions application process

  • 31 October 2013 - closing date for on-time applications
  • 3 March 2014 - letters (and email if you applied online) offering a school place will be dispatched on this date
  • 18 March 2014 - deadline for response forms, putting names on continued interest (waiting) lists, adding new preferences or making late applications
  • 24 March 2014 - we start considering late applications and waiting lists.

Choosing a school and open days

Our choosing a school page gives lots of tips about choosing the right school for your child. Secondary schools and academies hold open events, which give you the chance to have a look around and ask questions. See a list of open events for this year (.pdf format, 35 Kb).

Catchment areas 

Every school has a catchment (or designated) area. If there are more applications than places, priority is given to children living in the catchment area. We advise you to list your catchment school as one of your preferences so that there is more chance of your child being offered a place at one of your chosen schools.

To find out what your catchment school is, visit and enter your postcode.

Will my child get a place?

Catchment area is one of the ways that places at schools are decided. There are other factors, such as whether a child has a brother or sister at the school or whether they have special educational needs. Religious or faith schools could use the religion of your child or family as a deciding factor. The admission rules (pdf format, 142 Kb) give more detail about how places are decided. Voluntary aided and foundation schools have their own admission rules.

Confirmation of places

Secondary school allocation letters will be sent by second class mail on 3 March 2014 to all who applied before 31 October 2013. Emails will be sent in batches on 3 March confirming the schools allocated where applications were submitted online.

All information regarding what to do once you have received confirmation of your school place will be provided in the letter, there is no need to call.

If your child was born between 1 September 2002 and 31 August 2003 (inclusive), they will start secondary school in September 2014.

What if I don’t get the place I want?

You can put your child's name down on the waiting (or continued interest) list at up to three schools where a place could not be offered. You should read our policy on continued interest lists (pdf format, 41 Kb) first. Lists for entry to Year 7 will be maintained for the whole of the academic year until July at the end of Year 7.


You have the right to appeal for a place at any school where a place could not be offered. The information sent out to you in the post will explain more about who is responsible for organising your appeal.

Will I get help with transport to school?

You can use the home to school transport policy (.pdf format, 54 Kb) to find out whether your child is eligible for free or concessionary transport.

Moving/transferring schools

Visit the apply to transfer schools page if you are moving to Oxfordshire with a secondary age child or are considering transferring your child to another secondary school in Oxfordshire. Contact the Admissions Team for further advice.

How places were allocated

September 2014

Read our summary document (pdf format, 21KB) showing how places were allocated to our state funded secondary schools on 3 March 2014, for entry to Year 7 in September 2014.

The documents below show an analysis of how many places were offered under each school's over-subscription rule, the distance from school of the last child to be offered a place and the number of unsuccessful applications.

September 2013

The documents below show an analysis of how many places were offered under each school's over-subscription rule, the distance from school of the last child to be offered a place and the number of unsuccessful applications.

September 2012

Help and advice

For advice and information about applying for a secondary school place, please contact our School Admissions Team.

Last reviewed
06 September 2013
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