Secondary School Applications – 1st March 2018


School uniform

Blackburn with Darwen primary school students will find out what secondary school places they have been offered on 1st March 2018. Parents will be able to log on to the Blackburn with Darwen Parent Portal from midnight to view the result of their child’s application.

Please note that if you accept your child’s school place online via, you do not need to telephone the Place Planning & Admissions Team to confirm the acceptance.

On March 1st 2018 Blackburn with Darwen Council will notify you of the allocated secondary school. If your child is refused admission to the preferred school(s) you have a right of appeal to an independent appeal panel.

March 31st 2018 is the closing date for receipt of appeal forms for appeals to be held in May/June.

Change of preference/late applications received after the allocation date
If you wish to change your preference after March 1st 2018, please put your request in writing to the Place Planning & Admissions team.

  • Phone: (01254) 666605
  • Email:
  • Write to: Place Planning & Admissions Team, Children Services & Education Department, 10 Duke Street, Blackburn, BB2 1DH.

If you have not previously submitted an application but decide you wish to apply for a place for your child after March 1st 2018, you must still complete the Council’s common application form. The Council will forward your form and any relevant documents to the admissions authority of the school(s) preferred for them to consider.

The Council will inform you about the outcome of your application. Where a place cannot be offered, the child’s details will be placed on the waiting list and you will be informed of your right of appeal.

Notification of offer of place
Decision letters from the Council informing you of the school at which a place has been offered should be received by you by March 1st 2018.

What happens if my child cannot be offered any of my listed preferences?
If a child is not allocated a place at any of the schools listed on the application form, the Council will write to parents offering the child a place at an alternative school.

Waiting List for Year 7
All admission authorities must maintain a waiting list until at least 31 December in the academic year of admission for every oversubscribed school. The admission authority must use the existing oversubscription criteria to rank the children.

As no distinction will be made between applications received on-time and late applications, these waiting lists
may change at any time.

If you want to know your child’s position on the waiting list you should contact the Council’s Place Planning &
Admissions team, telephone (01254) 666605. The waiting list will operate until 31 December 2018 only. After
this, if you want your child to change to another school, you should contact the headteacher of your child’s existing school or the Council’s Place Planning & Admissions team who will explain the procedures for changing schools.

Right of appeal
If your child has not been successful in gaining admission to their preferred school you have the right of appeal against the decision. The letter will also indicate the school at which a place has been offered. Information about appeal procedures for the voluntary aided faith schools, free schools and academies is available from the relevant school.

Appeals are considered by an independent appeal panel. The panel is made up of people who have played no part in the original allocation of places and are independent of the school and the Council. The independent appeal panel’s decision is binding on all parties.

You will normally be given two weeks’ notice of the date, time and venue of the appeal hearing. All relevant papers will be sent to you 10 school days before the hearing.

The yearly appeals for the year 7 intakes often involve a large number of appeals for individual schools which can last over several days or weeks but the panel cannot make any decisions until they have heard all the appeals for that school/year group.

Once the panel has made the decisions on all the cases for that school/year group, a decision letter (confirming the outcome and, in the case of unsuccessful appeals, full details of the reasons for the panel’s decision) will be sent to all appellants within 5 working days of the decisions being made.

If you need advice on completing the appeal form please contact the Place Planning & Admissions team, telephone (01254) 666605 or your child’s primary school head teacher.

You may appeal for more than one school, but are normally only allowed to appeal once for each school in respect of a school year.

Please note that distress caused to a pupil because of not gaining a place at the preferred school will not normally be considered sufficient grounds for granting a re-appeal.

Requests for re-appeals for the voluntary aided faith schools, trust schools, free school and academies are considered by the relevant school and not the Council.

Changing schools during the academic year
Generally a child admitted in a secondary school as a Year 7 student will remain in that school until age 16.
Occasionally, parents may consider a change of school. Before requesting a change of school, please contact the headteacher of your child’s current school.

The form is available from the Place Planning & Admissions team, Children’s Services and Education Department, 10 Duke Street, Blackburn, BB2 1DH. Telephone (01254) 666605.

Oversubscribed year groups
Parents may occasionally go to appeal and notice that some year groups in the school which they prefer are over the published admission number. In most cases this is due to previous successful appeals. In addition, fair access protocols allow certain vulnerable children to access school places outside of the admissions and appeals procedures.

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