When to apply for a primary school place
In West Northamptonshire, children are eligible to start school (in reception year) in the September following their 4th birthday.
There are 3 types of schools covering different age ranges - primary, infant and junior schools.
If you are a parent or carer of a child living in West Northamptonshire at the time of your application you can apply for a school place at the following times:
|Child's date of birth between||Apply for||Applications open||Closing date for applications|
|1 September 2018 and 31 August 2019||Reception place in primary or infant school||9 September 2022||15 January 2023|
|1 September 2015 and 31 August 2016||Year 3 place in junior school (if currently attending infant school)||9 September 2022||15 January 2023|
Reception intake - primary and infant schools
In West Northamptonshire all children are offered a full year in reception.
Primary schools run from reception to year 6 and take new children into reception. Infant schools run from reception to year 2 and take new children in to reception.
If your child turns 4 between 1 September 2022 and 31 August 2023, you should apply for their reception place by 15 January 2023. After this deadline you will need to make a late application.
Can I defer my child's start at school?
If you feel that your child may not be ready to start school in the September following their 4th birthday, we advise you to discuss your concerns with your allocated school.
Legally, children are required to start their compulsory education from the beginning of the term following their 5th birthday.
This is based on a 3-term year with terms starting in:
- April (after Easter)
If your child was born in the summer (between 1 April and 31 August) and you're thinking of delaying their admission by a full school year please see our guidance on summer-born delays.
Year 3 intake - junior schools
If your child is in year 2 of an infant school and turns 7 between 1 September 2022 and 31 August 2023, you will need to apply for a junior school place by 15 January 2023. After this deadline you will need to make a late application.
All infant schools have a linked junior school and children attending the infant school will have some priority within the oversubscription criteria for that school. You still need to apply for a junior school place for your child - places are not allocated automatically.
Year 5 intake - middle schools
There are no longer any middle schools in West Northamptonshire. However, your child may be living in West Northamptonshire and be attending a lower school in another county.
If this is the case, you can apply for a middle school place outside of Northamptonshire for your child if they have their 9th birthday between 1 September 2022 and 31 August 2023 and are in their last year (year 4) at a lower school outside of Northamptonshire.
You should apply for a middle school place by 15 January 2023. After this deadline you will need to make a late application.
Applying for a school place outside the normal entry times
Any applications to move schools outside of the school's normal entry year will be processed as in-year applications.
We do not allocate an in-year school place more than a month in advance of the date the place is required. Therefore, applications from children wanting a year 3 or 5 place at a primary school (rather than a junior or middle school) will be considered as in-year applications and will not be processed until the summer term. Parents will be informed in writing if a place is available in their preferred primary school.
Special educational needs
If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan, there are different procedures for obtaining a school place. Find out more about the application process for children with special educational needs.
Living outside of Northamptonshire
If you live outside of Northamptonshire, you will need to apply through the local authority for the area in which you live, even if you are applying for a Northamptonshire school.
Last updated 22 February 2023