Starting Primary or Secondary School in September 2022

Important information for Parents and Carers

Admissions to Schools 2022: The Citizen Portal is now CLOSED for applications for Primary & Secondary School for September 2022.

Tuesday 19 April 2022 is National Offer Day for Primary School Places for Reception - September 2022 entry.

If you applied online (via the Citizen Portal) for a primary school place you can log into your account on the Citizen Portal from 19 April to view the school offer information. You will also receive email confirmation of the school offer on 19 April 2022 (if you requested to be notified by email). PLEASE NOTE: emails are automatically generated and will NOT be received by all applicants at the same time. Please be patient and use your portal account to view the school offer in the first instance.

If you did not apply via the Citizen Portal, an offer letter will be posted out via first class mail on 19 April 2022. Ordinarily you should expect to receive the letter within 2 working days, subject to any delays with postal services.

If you wish to request an alternative school to the school that has been offered you must do so by completing a Primary Late Application/Change of Preference form* using the 'Do it online' link on this page. Further information can also be found in the 'frequently asked questions' section at the bottom of this page.

*IMPORTANT If you do not reside in the Sefton area you must apply through your home Local Authority even if the school you now wish to apply for is in Sefton.

Applying for a Primary or Secondary School Place – A Guide for Parents/Carers

It is an important decision for many families when considering which schools to name on their application for starting school for the first time and when moving onto secondary school. 

Sefton Council has prepared two guides which provides parents/carers with all the relevant information required in order to submit an application for your child’s school place, whether they are starting school for the first time (entering Reception class), or transferring from Primary to Secondary School (entering Year 7).

It is very important that you read both guides before you submit an application. The Guide for Parents includes information on:  

    • How applications should be submitted
    • The closing dates and deadlines for applications
    • How the Local Authority processes both primary and secondary applications
    • What happens if your application is late
    • What to do if you move house during the application period 
    • How and when you will receive your offer of a school place around national offer days
Parents Guide Applying For A School Place 2022 23 (pdf 1.08MB)

Once you have read the Guide for Parents you can then view the Sefton Schools Admissions Information Guide

Sefton Primary and Secondary Schools - Admissions Information Guide

To help decide which schools you would like to apply for you should:

    • Read the Parents Guide - Applying for a Primary or Secondary School place
    • Refer to the Primary and Secondary Schools Admissions Information Guide to find schools in your area
    • Look at the admissions criteria for the schools you are considering
    • Think about which criterion your application would be considered under and review the numbers of successful applications in each criterion for previous years. This should help inform your choices and chances of a successful application.
    • Contact the school to enquire about open evenings/days or personal visits 
    • Look at other sources of information such as school website and Ofsted reports
    • Complete the supplementary information forms (which you should request from the school) if you want to be considered under the faith criterion for admission to a faith school you name on your application. You will see if this is required for your preferred schools by reading the Schools Information Guide.
    • Look at whether you child would qualify for home to school transport for the schools you are considering - Section C of the Guide for Parents/Carers.
Sefton Schools Admissions Information Guide 2022 23 (pdf 10.66MB)


Important Dates for September 2022 Admissions 

Applications for 2022 entry into Reception and Year 7 opened on 1st September 2021 via the online Citizen Portal.  The national closing dates for both applications have now passed. If you are a Sefton resident, parents can submit a late application or make changes to an existing application by completing a Late Application/Change of Preference form by using the 'Do it online' link on this page. If you do not live in Sefton you must apply to your home Local Authority even if the school you wish to apply for is within Sefton.

Submit your application online via the Citizen Portal by the following closing dates:

  • Closing Date for applications to start Secondary School is 31 October 2021

  • Closing Date for applications to start Primary School is 15 January 2022

Late Applications and Changes of Preference (including other changes)

After the closing dates shown above you can submit a late application or change of preference form if you live in the Sefton Council area and in these circumstances:
1) After the national closing date has passed and the Citizen Portal is now closed for online applications.*
2) After submitting an application you wish to change the application or your school preference(s) before National Offer Day.*
3) After National Offer Day either a) this is your first application for a school place or b) you wish to apply for an alternative school instead of the school that has been offered.
IF YOU DO NOT RESIDE IN THE SEFTON AREA YOU MUST APPLY TO YOUR HOME LOCAL AUTHORITY EVEN IF THE SCHOOL YOU WISH TO APPLY FOR IS IN SEFTON.
*IMPORTANT - Please note that in both these circumstances a cut off date applies for these applications to be considered BEFORE National Offer Day. Please read the Parents Guide above for the relevant dates and further information about the processing of late applications or changes.

To submit a late application or change of preference please select the relevant form using the 'Do it online' link on this page.

Frequently Asked Questions for primary and secondary allocation of school places


If you have already registered on the Citizen Portal and you have forgotten your password, use the citizen portal link, enter your username (which is your email address) and click on the link for ‘forgotten password’. You will receive an email with further instructions and a link to reset your password.

If, after following the above process, you are still having difficulty accessing the online system, please contact the School Admissions Team for further advice.

The national offer dates are 1 March 2022 for Secondary School places and 19 April 2022 for Primary School places. 

  • If your child can be offered a place at more than one of your preferred schools we will offer you the place at your highest preferred school listed on your application form that we can.
  • If your child cannot be offered a place at any of the schools listed as preferences on your application form we will offer your child a place at the nearest qualifying school to your home address with an available place.
  • If you apply via the Citizen Portal you will be able to log into your account and view the school offer information online from the national offer date (shown above). If you ticked the box requesting that your school offer is sent via email we will also send an email on the national offer date. The email will confirm the name of the school at which your child has been offered a place. 
  • If you have not been offered your highest preferred school you will ordinarily  receive a letter within 48 hrs from the national offer date informing you about the appeals process. Further details are also available on the School Admissions Appeals page.
  • If you do not apply via the Citizen Portal, a letter will be posted to your home address 1st class on the national offer date. The letter will confirm the name of the school at which your child has been offered a place. In normal circumstances the letter should be received within 48 hrs.

Please note we will not disclose any offer information over the telephone (or in response to email enquiries) and you will have to wait for the letter to arrive at your home address.

You do not have to accept the place offered. The school place is allocated automatically and you should only return the slip declining the place offered if you have secured a place at another school, or no longer require a school place for your child in the Sefton area. Full details will be enclosed with the email and letter.  You should NOT decline the place offered if you are going to appeal for a place at another school, until that appeal has been heard. If you have secured a place at another school please inform the Admissions Team of the name of that school as soon as possible after the national offer date. This will enable the place allocated to be offered to another child.

For current vacancy information, please contact the Admissions Team using the 'Contacts' email link on this page and provide your child's full name and date of birth and the name(s) of the schools that you are interested in.

Alternatively you can telephone the School Admissions Team on 0151 934 3590 however please note that the phone lines will be extremely busy on and around the national offer dates. We would prefer contact via email please use the 'Contacts' email link on this page.

If you wish to request an alternative to your child's allocated school place, you MUST complete a Late Application/Change of Preference form - see next section for more information. You can also access the relevant form on the 'Do it online' link on this page.

Yes, you must complete a late application/change of preference form which is available on the 'do it online' section on this page.

 

 

Your child will automatically be added to the waiting list for any Sefton school you have been refused a place at (providing it was a higher preference than the school you were offered). If you have been refused a place at a school in other areas you must check the procedure for being included on a waiting list with the relevant Local Authority in whose area the school is located. 

For further information on the operation of waiting lists for Sefton schools please refer to the Guide for Parents.

Full details will be contained in the email/letter sent to you on the national offer date. Further details are also available on our School Admissions Appeals page.

 


Last Updated on Friday, April 1, 2022

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