Thousands of South Yorkshire pupils get their preferred school places

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Thousands of primary pupils in Rotherham will be going to one of their preferred schools this September – as admissions results reveal a success rate of more than 97 per cent.

As part of this year’s national offer day, 97.3 per cent of children have been offered one of their three preferred schools, including entrance into infant and junior schools.

There has been extra demand for primary school places in Rotherham, largely driven by an increase in the birth rate.

To combat this, Rotherham Council has invested £13.5m over the last five years in an expansion and building programme, permanently adding an additional 1,130 primary school places. This has meant the borough is able to continue to satisfy a high percentage of parental preferences enabling children to attend a school of their parents’ choice.

The council is also looking ahead to areas where there is still a need for more places with the goal of enabling all families to get a school place in their local area.

Ian Thomas, strategic director of children and young people’s services, said: “Our commitment is to be a child centred borough and this includes making sure all our children have a great start to life. A significant way of achieving this is to make sure they have access to the best possible education.”

Mr Thomas added whilst it has not been possible to offer all children a place at their first preferred school, parents have the right of appeal. Cases are heard by independent appeals panels.

The council also maintains a waiting list until December 31 and will work closely with the families involved to ensure they are supported through this process. In total 3,302 parents received notification of which school their child has been allocated.