More than 5,000 County Durham children have received a place at one of their chosen secondary schools for the academic year due to start in September 2017. 

Parents of 5,088 soon-to-be Year 7 pupils will receive offers of school places on March 1st. 98.3% will have been given one of their preferred choices. 

Cllr Ossie Johnson, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for children and young people’s services, said, “We know that for parents the decision of where to send their children is a big one and so we are delighted to be able to offer so many of them their first-choice schools.” 

“In our county, we benefit from many schools with superb facilities and dedicated, talented staff, and we hope that wherever pupils study they will be happy and successful.” 

95% of County Durham Youngsters Get their First Choice School
98.3% of pupils got one of their top three choices

Out of the 5,088 applications that were made, 4,849 pupils (95.3%) received their first choice of school. 129 pupils (2.5%) got their second-choice school and 26 children (0.5%) were given their third choice. 

Only 84 children have not been offered one of their top three choices of school, but Durham County Council said that all of these children have been offered places at other schools as close to their homes as possible. 

Durham County Council recently announced that it was not planning any large-scale changes to the system for allocating school places as the current system appeared to be functioning well.

Compared to a number of other places in the north, County Durham’s parents have been quite successful at getting their kids into their first-choice schools. In 2016, only 91% of children in York got into their first-choice school and only 87% did in Sheffield.

In Hull, only 80.9% of pupils got their first choice of school and in Bradford only 72% did. In North Yorkshire, 87% of pupils got their first choice of school.


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