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How to apply for a school place outside the normal transfer times

In-year school places for 2023/24

If you are applying for an in-year school place for the 2023-24 academic year, our aim is to notify you of the outcome of your application within 15 school days of receipt of your application.

You do not need to contact us again after submitting an application - we will contact you as soon as we have an outcome.

Before you explore changing schools please consider whether this is the best option for your child.

To apply for an in-year transfer

Please read the important information below before completing the application form.

​West Northamptonshire Council co-ordinates all in-year admissions for West Northamptonshire schools, except for the following:

If you wish to apply for a school place at any of the above schools, please contact the school directly.

Schools outside of West Northamptonshire

To make an in-year application for a place at a school outside of West Northamptonshire, please contact the local authority in which the school is situated.

Schools in West Northamptonshire

Before you make an application for a West Northamptonshire school (other than those listed above), please note:

  • you must not apply for a school place more than one month before it is required, and applications outside of this timescale will not be processed
  • the child must be a resident of the UK (see 'Moving to West Northamptonshire' below)
  • you may state up to 3 preferences on the application form (find your closest schools here by selecting Location and then entering your postcode – please note the measuring system used on this website is different to the mapping system used by WNC when we apply oversubscription criteria, so distances may not be the same)
  • you may only apply if you are the person with parental responsibility for the child
  • you must ensure you have read the further information below before applying
  • some schools may require you to complete additional supplementary information forms (SIFs) and return them directly to the school to enable their oversubscription criteria to be applied (e.g. schools which prioritise children of a certain faith). Check with the school or in the in-year prospectuses below in “Further Information”.
  • your child should take up the school place within 10 school days, or by the date shown on the formal letter offering the school place
  • it is expected that your child will continue to attend their current school (where possible) until a school place at an alternative school is offered and a date has been arranged for admission

A reference number will be automatically generated following successful submission of your form.

What happens after applying

Find out how we allocate in-year places.

Fair access - providing appropriate education for children of statutory school age

All local authorities have in place a Fair Access Protocol (FAP). This ensures that ‘unplaced’ children, especially the most vulnerable, are offered a place as quickly as possible.

The operation of FAP is outside the arrangements for coordination, and is triggered when an eligible child has not secured a school place under normal in-year admission procedures. We must ensure that no school - including those with available places - is asked to take an unfairly large number of children who have been excluded from other schools or who have challenging behaviour.

There is no duty for us or admission authorities to comply with parental preference when allocating places through the FAP. However, parental preference will be considered.

In order to identify whether a child meets the criteria of the Fair Access Protocol, or whether additional support may be required in school for a successful reintegration, parents are encouraged to complete the questions on the in-year application, providing as much information as possible regarding the child’s previous history.

Further information

You should be aware when making an application that:

  • moving into a school’s linked village or area does not necessarily guarantee your child a place at that school
  • a high percentage of schools in West Northamptonshire have reached capacity in most year groups and it therefore may not be possible to offer a place at your preferred schools. If this is the case and your child does not have a school place in the area, we will look for a place at the closest school to your home address with a place in your child’s year group
  • for families with more than one child, it can be extremely difficult to allocate places for all the children in the same school. The result may be that siblings have to be split across two or more schools or 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 you are moving to West Northamptonshire, documentary evidence in the form of a solicitor’s letter to confirm exchange of contracts or a copy of your signed tenancy, or rental agreement, may be required to verify your address

Moving from overseas

If you are moving from overseas your child may be entitled to a school place.

You should be aware that:

  • children must be resident within the country before we will process an application - a visitor's visa does not entitle your child to a school place
  • if your application is due to a move into the UK, documentary evidence to verify your address may be required, for example, a copy of your rental agreement or exchange of contracts letter (the council reserves the right to seek further documentary evidence as necessary)
  • you must not send original documents in support of your application, as they will not be returned

Special conditions apply to UK Armed Service Personnel and other Crown Servants.

For families of service personnel with confirmed posting to their area, or crown servants returning from overseas to live in that area, places will be allocated in advance of the family arriving in the area, provided the application is accompanied by an official letter declaring a relocation date and a Unit postal address or quartering area address.

Where places in the year group are available at the preferred school, it is expected therefore that places will be allocated in advance, however, this does not necessarily guarantee a place at the preferred school if the year group has reached capacity.

The waiting list does not operate on a 'first come, first served' basis. Each additional child will require the waiting list to be re-ranked according to the oversubscription criteria for the school so a child’s place on the waiting list can change.

When a place becomes available at a school, the child at the top of the waiting list at that point will be offered the place.

Waiting lists at all schools except those listed at the top of this page are cleared at the end of each academic term. If you would like your child to remain on the waiting list for the rest of the academic year in which your applied for a place, you must email or write to the School Admissions Team by 31 December and 31 March with your child’s name, date of birth and name of the school you want them to remain on the waiting list for.

Contact details

Email: [email protected]

School Admissions Team
West Northamptonshire Council
Angel Street
Phone: 0300 126 7000

​If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan or a statutory statement of special educational needs (SEN), please see the special educational needs (SEND) page for information on how to apply as there is a different process for these applications.

Last updated 20 March 2024