How to review your admissions policy

Maintained schools and academies are required to have an admissions policy. Understand the requirements, find out how to robustly review your policy, and use our model and examples as a guide for what a good policy looks like.

Last reviewed on 14 July 2023See updates
Ref: 38427
Statutory/mandatory for:
Maintained schools
Free schools
  1. Key facts
  2. What this policy needs to do
  3. 3 key questions to challenge the policy
  4. Model policy
  5. Examples from a local authority and schools

What this policy needs to do

All schools must publish their admissions arrangements in line with statutory guidance given in:

The guidance states that schools must make the following information clear in their policy:

  • How parents/carers should apply to your school - including admission outside of the normal age group
  • How applications will be considered at every age group
  • The set number of admissions for each age group (known as the published admission number (PAN))
  • Your school's oversubscription criteria (i.e. how your school will determine which pupils gain a place if there are more applications than spaces)
  • The process for in-year admissions
  • The process for appeals
  • Your monitoring arrangements

If appropriate for your school, the policy will also need to include:

  • Arrangements for admitting pupils below compulsory school age
  • Application requirements when transferring from nursery to primary school, or infant to junior school
  • Entry requirements for selective admission places
  • Boarding school arrangements

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