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Changing school if you are not moving house

1. Making an in-year application

An in-year admission is when a child needs an immediate school place during the school year

You can only make an in-year application 6 weeks before you intend to move schools.

Exceptionally, parents seeking an in-year place starting in September 2021 can apply from 20 April 2021. Please see our timeline for more details.

How you make an application will depend on why you wish to move school:

  • if you wish to move schools but are not moving house,
  • if you are moving house 
  • if you are moving into Buckinghamshire and wish you child to be considered for a  grammar school your child will need to take a transfer test

Find the schools near to you

Use our 'Find your child a school place' service to find information about the schools you are interested in including:

  • catchment areas
  • OFSTED report
  • admission numbers
  • admission rules

Who to apply to

You will either need to apply directly to the school or to the council. The in-year application checker will let you know who you need to apply to. 

Who to apply to

Please check this before making an application.

 

Check for school places

Many Buckinghamshire schools will already be full and may only have occasional vacancies when a child leaves the school. 

Check for school places

As vacancies can change on a daily basis any information about vacancies received direct from a school, is only valid at the time the information is provided.

 

Considerations when making an in year application

Will my child be offered a place at one of my preferred schools?

Many Buckinghamshire schools are already full and, therefore, it may not be possible to offer a place at your preferred schools.

Will my children all be offered the same school?

For families with more than one child, it can be extremely difficult to allocate a place for all the children in the same school. The result of an in-year application may be that siblings have to be split across two or more schools and that, in order to keep the children together, we may only be able to allocate a school which is not your preferred school and which may be some distance away from the home address.

If your child will require a place in Year 10 or Year 11

Think carefully before choosing to disrupt your child’s GCSE’s by requiring a school move part-way through this crucial part of their education. By the start of Year 10 many schools will have already set their GCSE options for their students so your child may not be able to study their preferred options, even if a place can be offered.

Fair Access Protocol

We have a Fair Access Protocol which ensures that vulnerable groups of children can quickly access school places.

 

2. Changing school if you are not moving house

Please bear with us at this time as we are processing a large number of applications make sure you have checked the timeline to see when you will be notified of the outcome of your application.

There is no guarantee that your preferred school will be able to offer your child a place.

From 1 July we will no longer accept applications for immediate admission for children already in a Buckinghamshire school.  Any application received after this time will be for September admission.

Who you apply to

You will either need to apply directly to the school or to the council. The in-year application checker will let you know who you need to apply to. Please refer to this before making an application. 

Who to apply to

Ensure that you have your evidence 

You will need to upload address evidence with your application . You cannot submit your application without it. You will need to submit a scan or photo of a utility bill dated within the last three months, showing usage

Applying to the Admissions and Transport Team

If your child is currently attending any of the below please complete the online application form.

  • Buckinghamshire local authority school,  
  • independent school
  • out of county school
  • educated at home

Receiving the outcome

For immediate entry

Once your evidence has been approved, your application will be processed. We will email you within 20 school days. 

 

For September 2021 entry

Once your evidence has been approved, your application will be processed. We will email you depending on when we receive your application. Please see the 2021 timeline for further details.

If you are offered a place

If a place is available at the school you would like your child to attend, you will be sent an email offering you a school place. You will need to accept the offer within 5 days, and contact the school to arrange the start date.

If you are not offered a place at one of your preferred schools

Buckinghamshire residents only - If we are unable to offer your child  a place at one of your preferred schools and your child does not attend a Buckinghamshire local authority school we will offer you a place at the nearest school with a vacancy.

If your child is not offered a place at the school of your first preference, they will be automatically placed on the continuing interest list. This will be for all the other schools which you ranked at a higher preference than the school where you received an offer.

You can also appeal the decision.

3. Changing school if you are moving house

Please bear with us at this time as we are processing a large number of applications make sure you have checked the timeline to see when you will be notified of the outcome of your application,

There is no guarantee that your preferred school will be able to offer your child a place. 

When you can apply

You will need to apply for the place within 6 weeks of your planned move.

Who you apply to

You will either need to apply directly to the school or to the council. The in-year application checker will let you know who you need to apply to.  Please check this before making an application.

Who to apply to

Ensure that you have your evidence

You will need to upload your supporting evidence with your application . You cannot submit your application without it. Please ensure you know what evidence you will need to provide and that you have an electronic copy of this evidence before you start to complete the application.

Make the application

Complete the online application form. Once you have submitted your application you will receive an acknowledgment email that will confirm that we have your application.

We will email you

We will review your application and we will email you to let you know:

  • that we require further evidence. You will be required to log in and submit this via your application.
    or
  • we are processing your application and we will advise you when we will write to you.

Receiving the outcome

For immediate entry

Your application will be processed when we have approved your application with the correct evidence and we will email you within 20 school days

For September 2021 entry

Your application will be processed, and we will email you depending on when we receive your application. Please see the 2021 timeline for further detail.

If you are offered a place

If a place is available at the school you would like your child to attend, you will be sent an email offering you a school place. You will need to accept the offer within 5 days, and contact the school to arrange the start date.

If you are not offered a place at one of your preferred schools

If we are unable to offer you a place at one of your preferred schools and you live in Buckinghamshire, we will offer you a place at the nearest school with a vacancy.

If your child is not offered a place at the school of your first preference, they will be automatically placed on the continued list. This will be for all the other schools which you ranked at a higher preference than the school where you received an offer.

You can also appeal the decision.

4. Moving to Grammar School

If you are moving into Buckinghamshire and you are seeking a grammar school place you can request for your child to be tested. Evidence of your move will need to be approved before testing will be agreed

We recommend that you also apply for an upper school place as it may take up to 8 weeks for a test date to be arranged.

Most grammar schools are nearly always full so there is no guarantee of a Buckinghamshire grammar school place being available through this process, even if a child qualifies.

Who you apply to

You will either need to apply directly to the grammar school or to the Admission team. The in-year application checker will let you know who you need to apply to. Please check this before making an application.

Who to apply to

Ensure that you have your evidence

You will need to upload your supporting evidence with your application . You cannot submit your application without it. Please ensure you know what evidence you will need to provide and that you have an electronic copy of this evidence before you start to complete the application.

Make the application

Complete the online application form. Once you have submitted your application you will receive an acknowledgment email that will confirm that we have your application.

We will email you

We will review your application and we will email you to let you know:

  • that we require further evidence. You will be required to log in and submit this via your application.
    or
  • we are processing your application and we will advise you when we will write to you.

Receiving the outcome

Your application will be processed your application will be processed, and we will contact you with the test details within 20 school days.

Exceptional circumstances

If you have not moved into Buckinghamshire or have exceptional circumstances why your child should move to a grammar school. You will need to provide evidence from your child’s current school and/or other source.

If your child is tested and qualifies, please refer to the school to determine how long the qualification will be valid.

If your child will require a place in Year 10 or Year 11

All Buckinghamshire Grammar schools undertake their own testing for entry in to Key Stage 4. Each school’s decision to deem your child qualified for admission applies only to that school. Some schools commence their GCSE courses in the summer term of Year 9, and will manage their KS4 admission process for this point.

You should check with your preferred schools about the timing of their individual testing process for entry into KS4. Once schools have  set their KS4 options your child’s preferred options may not be available, even if a place could be offered. Think carefully before choosing to disrupt your child’s GCSE’s by requiring a school move part-way through this crucial part of their education.

5. Check for school places

You can check if a school has a current vacancy

Check school places

  • We aim to update this information on a weekly basis during term time but during busy periods this is not always possible.  
  • This information is given as a guide only as the situation can change on a daily basis. 
  • In many cases where the vacancy says YES it may mean there is only 1 place.  

Will a place be offered if there is a vacancy?

If a school has a vacancy when you apply you may not be offered the place

  • as the place may be filled by the time your application is processed
  • there may be other parents also applying for a place for their child who may have a higher priority for a place than your child.
  • We may already be working to fill places from the continuing interest list and  the place may not be available when you make your application.


Can an application be made to a school that does not have a vacancy?

You may still apply for a school which doesn’t have any vacancies, and if we are unable to offer your child a place then you will have the right to appeal and to request for your child's name to remain on the continuing interest list for the remainder of the school year.

Who to apply to

You will either need to apply directly to the school or to the council. The in-year application checker will let you know who you need to apply to.

Who to apply to

Considerations to be made when making an in year application 

Please note that Admissions and Transport Policies are not linked and the Council’s Transport policy is only to provide free transport to a child’s nearest school.  We will not always provide transport to an alternative nearer school purely on the basis that vacancies exist.  Please refer to the complete transport policy so you understand the implications on transport of the preferences you express.

6. Providing evidence of your move

You will need to upload your supporting evidence with your application. Please ensure you know what you will need to provide and that you have an electronic copy before you start the application.

If you are not moving house

You will need to submit a scan or photo of a utility bill dated within the last three months, showing usage.

Moving house

You will need to provide evidence of your move, depending on the evidence that you provide, we may ask for more if we are still not sure you live where you say you live

 

Type of house move

 We need

Property sale

  • A solicitor's letter confirming contracts have been exchanged

Or

  • A copy of one of the following documents showing your new address; current Council Tax bill, driving licence, utility bill (showing usage), or doctor’s registration letter for your child.

Property rental

  • A formal lease agreement, provided through an approved letting agency, confirming that your lease has started and showing that you will be living at the address for at least six month (page showing details of new address and last page signed by landlord and tenant).

Or

  • A copy of one of the following documents showing your new address; current Council Tax bill, driving licence, utility bill (showing usage), or doctor's registration letter for your child.

Child permanently moving from one parent/carer to live with another

  • Written confirmation from both parents of the new arrangements.
  •  A copy of the current Council Tax bill from the parent with whom the child is moving to live with.
  • Proof that Child Benefit is being paid to the parent with whom the child is going to be living with, or if Child Benefit is not received, a letter from the child’s GP confirming the address at which the child is registered.

Refuge (domestic abuse)

  • Written confirmation from the refuge that you are currently residing there.

Any other type of house move (eg moving in with a family member)

Moving from abroad

You will need to provide evidence of your move to the UK. We will require flight details, passport, visa (if required) and address details.

Evidence

 We need

Flight details

  • Copies for you and your child’s flight details of their return

Passport

  • Copies for you and your child

Visas

  • Copies required for overseas nationals (including those from the EU)
Moving back from abroad to a property you already own

 

  • Proof that you own the property (e.g. Land Registry document). If the property is currently being leased, we need a copy of the written notice you have given the tenants that you will be returning.
Moving from abroad to live in the UK to a rental property
  • A formal lease agreement, provided through an approved letting agency, confirming that your lease has started and showing that you will be living at the address for at least six month (page showing details of new address and last page signed by landlord and tenant).

Or

  • A copy of one of the following documents showing your new address; current Council Tax bill, driving licence, utility bill (showing usage), or doctor's registration letter for your child.

From 1 January 2021 overseas nationals (including those from the EU) entering the UK who wish to apply for a state-funded school need to check that they have a right of abode or check that the conditions of their visas permit them to access a state-funded school. You may need to apply for a certificate of entitlement. Having a right of abode means you’re allowed to live in the U.K. without any immigration restrictions

Irish citizens’ have the right to live in the UK but their family members, who are not Irish or UK citizens, may need to apply for a visa.

 

Service Families

Children of UK HM forces or other Crown Servants must be treated as meeting the residency criteria for a particular area even if no house is currently owned in that area once proof of the posting has been provided. Please provide quarters address, or if not yet available the unit postal address. It would be advisable to attach proof of the posting (eg. copy of the Assignment Order) if available.

7. Continued Interest list

Do you hold waiting lists?

We no longer hold waiting lists, there is a continuing interest list for each school. 

Will you provide my child’s position on the continued interest list?

No, the list is only ranked into order using the schools admission rules when there is a vacancy.  We then contact the parents of the child’s who is top of the list to offer them a place.

How long will my child stay on the continued interest list?

The continuing interest list for each school will be held for the remainder of the school year, at which time they will close. Continuing interest lists for primary schools or secondary upper schools will not be carried over to the next academic year. 

If you wish to be considered for a school place for a new academic year you will be required to complete another in-year application form. Please check our timeline for dates.

We will not contact you to advise you to make a new application but if you have not been offered one of your preferred schools by the end of the school year you will need to re-apply by the start of the new school year to remain on the continuing interest list(s).

8. Timeline for in-year September 2021

Please note that if you wish to make an in year application for a school place starting in September 2021 we will process your application in accordance with the timetable below.  Please note that any applications received before 20 April 2021 will be disregarded.

 

If you are moving into Buckinghamshire you will need to provide evidence of your move before we can consider your application by the timelines below.

Primary schools

Applications received Offer email will be sent by
20 April – 31 May 21 July
1 June – 21 July * 6 September
After 21 July 17 September

* Please note that for applications received between 1 June to 21 July for Primary applications only, we will endeavour to process by the end of August but this may not always be possible due to school holidays as we may not be able to contact schools to discuss the offer of a place. In many cases it is the school that would make the final decision. 

Secondary schools

Applications received Offer email will be sent by
20 April – 31 May 21 July
1 June – 30 June  6 September
After 1 July Will not be processed until after the start of school in September 2021*

* Applications are not processed during the school holidays. As the schools are closed during these periods, we can't contact school staff. It is therefore extremely unlikely that your child will be able to start at their new school at the beginning of term.