FIRST preference secondary school places were offered to 78.4 per cent of pupils in Reading this year.
In line with national trends, this figure is slightly down on last year’s (82.3 per cent) while the number of applications for secondary school places has continued to rise, from 1,702 last year to 1,805 this year.
Part of this decrease in first preference allocations is due to the growing popularity of The Wren and Maiden Erlegh Reading schools which were new two years ago.
The number of families offered their second choice of school was 12.7 per cent compared with 12.2 per cent last year.
Reading is also in the fairly unusual situation of having two grammar schools in the borough which can affect the figures. For example, 28 students listed Reading School and Kendrick School as a higher preference but did not sit/pass the admissions test so it was not possible to offer them their preferences.
Councillor Tony Jones, Lead Member for Education, said:
“Overall, 91 per cent of families were offered their first or second preference schools this year while the number of applications for places continues to rise.
“Unfortunately, there are always going to be families who are disappointed but the Council continues to work closely with providers which has previously resulted in two new schools being opened in Reading which are proving to be increasingly popular.”
The complete figures are (2016 figures in brackets):
First preference: 78.4 per cent (82.3)
Second preference: 12.7 per cent (12.2)
Third preference: 4.2 per cent (2.6)
Fourth preference: 1 per cent (1.3)
Diverts (where no preference options are offered): 3.7 per cent (1.7)
Any parents who receive an offer this week and have any concerns, or would like to discuss their offer further, can call Reading Borough Council’s dedicated School Admissions Team on (0118) 937 3777 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. Alternatively, visit the council’s website at: http://www.reading.gov.uk/schooladmissions.