It’s secondary school National Offer Day – what happens now?

2 mins read

Tuesday 1 March 2022

Tags: education, secondary school offer, secondary school

This news story is for parents in England only. See our education advice if you live in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales.

If your child has an Education, Health and Care plan, there is a different admissions process that applies to your child.

Parents whose child is leaving primary school will have made their applications for a secondary school place last October.

Today is the National Offer Day for secondary school applications.

What happens on National Offer Day?

The schools you listed in your application will have each decided whether they can offer your child a place.

The local authority will have considered these offers against your preferences, along with everyone else’s.

And on National Offer Day, you’ll get a single offer of a school.

Your offer will be the highest preference school on your list that can give your child a place. If none of your preferences can offer your child a place – because too many other children are higher up on the oversubscription criteria – you’ll be offered another school.

This is likely to be the nearest school with places still available. Usually there will be a form to fill in to confirm that you accept the school offered. 

What if I’m not happy with the school offered?

If you are not happy with the school you have been offered, don’t panic. There are a number of things you can do:

  • Keep your child on the waiting list for any schools you originally applied for; sometimes there is quite a bit of movement before September.
  • Put in a new application for other schools not on your original list.
  • Appeal for any school where you applied and were turned down.

We advise that you accept the school place offered if you can, even if you aren’t happy with it. This will ensure that your child at least has a guaranteed school place if other options fail.

Where can I find out more about this?

Visit our page on applying for a school place, where we go into more detail about your options if you’re not happy with the offer.

You can find out what support you can expect for your child on our page Extra support in school.