Rotherham bucks trend as pupils get school of choice

Published Thursday, 3rd March 2016

Once again thousands of pupils across Rotherham are set to go to their preferred secondary school in September with 99 percent getting a school they want.

Today is Secondary National Offer Day and Rotherham Council can reveal that out of 3,319 applications for places, 96 percent have been given their first preference and a further 3 percent their second or third choices.

This follows a similarly successful year last year where again 99 per cent of pupils were allocated one of their preferred schools.

And this year even more pupils have been able to get their first choice – rising from 94 per cent last year to 96 per cent this year.

These figures show the town is bucking the national trend – where up to one in seven pupils are missing out on their chosen school.

A rise in birth rates nationally has placed huge strain on primary places nationally and this is now coming through to the secondary sector.

Cllr Gordon Watson, Rotherham Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services said: "Today is a great day for pupils here in Rotherham. I am very pleased we are able to offer the vast majority of pupils their preferred choice of secondary school. Being able to access your preferred school will have is good for communities and can also help drive up attainment levels."

Ian Thomas, Strategic Director of Children and Young People’s Services at Rotherham Council added: "This is indeed great news for the cohort of pupils who will be starting their secondary school education in September.

"We are fortunate in Rotherham that the overwhelming majority of children receive an offer of their preferred choice of school. But let’s not forget this good news is also a direct result of the council’s ongoing positive working relationships with the borough’s secondary schools and academies. It once again means the vast majority of parents and carers have been successful in securing their first preference of secondary school for their child. I hope there will be some very happy parents and carers in Rotherham today as a result."

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