Before you apply
Parents or carers can apply for an in-year place at any time but a school will only hold a place for six school weeks.
There is no guarantee that a place will be available at your preferred school.
You do not need to apply for a mid-year place if your child will:
- start primary or infant school (reception year)
- start Year 3 at junior school
- start Year 7 at secondary school
- start Year 10 at Lincoln University Technical College
When starting school in these years there is a separate process to apply for a school place.
You should check if your child is eligible for free or post-16 school transport before making your application.
Please read the relevant guide:
You can use our directory to find out more about a school.
If your child is unhappy, discuss this with your child’s headteacher first. Only make a midyear application if you are sure the issue cannot be resolved.
If your child has special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and you need further advice, email [email protected] or call 0800 195 1635. If your child has an education and health care plan (EHCP), contact your case worker.
If you are thinking of moving schools because your child is at risk of being excluded, email [email protected] for advice.
How to apply
If you are moving house, you can apply for a school place before you move.
You can apply for any school in Lincolnshire except Lincoln University Technical College (UTC). You must apply on the UTC website.
The application will be based on your current address unless you are members of the UK armed forces or returning crown servants, where different rules apply.
You should contact the schools listed on your application to update your reserve list position once you have moved if your application is unsuccessful.
We will advise you the outcome of your application within 15 school days. If none of the schools on your application can offer and you do not have a school within a reasonable distance of your home address, then we will look for the closest school with spaces for you.
This will be done within 15 days of you arriving in the county, or in advance of a move for a forces child.
You need to ensure that your moving date is correct on your application and contact us if that changes before a place is offered.
You need to make sure that you include your child's current school information on your application form so we can see if your child is already attending a school within a reasonable distance of home. If you do not include this, it may delay your application.
A reasonable distance is:
- 10 miles for secondary (or three closest Lincolnshire schools if there are not three schools within 10 miles)
- five miles for primary
This does not include grammar schools.
Service Personnel and crown servants
You can apply for a school place in advance of a forces move. In most cases, this will be based on your current address unless you have a posting. If you have a posting a future address can be used.
If you do not have a future address yet, you can apply using your unit postal address. You can also use this rather than your future address if you prefer.
You can apply within the usual deadline for Reception, Year 3 or Year 7. At any other time, you can apply six weeks in advance.
We will follow the schools admissions policy when considering your address. You must send us proof of your posting.
We will ask the schools you apply for if they wish to offer you a place, even if they are full. They will comply with their policy when making this decision.
If no schools you list can offer a place, we will offer you a place at the closest school to your new address with spaces available in advance of your move if you have a posting order. If you do not have a posting order, this will be done when you arrive.
For further advice, email [email protected].
Collect a mid-year school offer
We will advise you of the outcome of your application within 15 school days. We do not make decisions on cases for most schools but we do pass on their response to you. We only make the decisions for one secondary school (Spalding High School) and infant, primary and junior schools that we maintain.
If a school does not offer, you have the right of appeal.
Where a school offers a place, your offer will not give a start date but you will be told when you must contact the school.
When no school listed on the application offers a place:
- if you live in Lincolnshire, and your child is not on a school roll, you will be offered the nearest school that has a place.
- if you are moving to Lincolnshire and have provided a date of the move within the next six weeks and intended address, we will source an alternative school place within 15 days of your arrival.
- if you live in Lincolnshire but already have a suitable school place, we will not make a new offer.
- if you do not live in Lincolnshire or have not provided a move date or new address we will not make a new offer until you provide this information.
After the year which the students enter the school, the school can refuse for three reasons
- where they feel that admitting a further student would cause prejudice to the other students on roll or
- where the school has space but the child has challenging behaviour and the school feels that admitting them would cause prejudice
- the child has been permanently excluded from two or more schools in two years (exceptions apply)
Where a school has space they may ask your child's previous school whether they have challenging behaviour. Where the school has reason to believe this is the case, they may refer the case under the fair access protocol. If this happens we will let you know, as it may take longer to get a place. These must be agreed within 20 days of the referral.
In all cases where a place is refused, parents have a right of appeal.
If a school has not responded to your application within 15 days, we will write and tell you this. You may wish to complain to the school.