Parenthood involves ensuring the best future possible for your children, so it’s only natural that many of us feel the pressure to live within the catchment area of well-rated schools. But how easy is it to place yourself – and your children – into the best position to be accepted into a school that will help them thrive?
Firstly, it’s important to note that acceptance isn’t guaranteed just because you live in the geographical boundary the school serves. Other factors, such as overall places, whether your child goes to a feeder school, religious requirements, special needs or academic ability, can all play a role.
If you believe your chances are good, double-check the catchment area of your target schools – by asking them directly or contacting the local authority – before you search for a new home. Also, you can’t buy or rent a second home in an area to apply for a school place – it has to be your permanent residence to count, and you have to live there before applying.
Don’t despair if you can’t move in time for the next intake – there may be several Ofsted-rated Good or Outstanding institutions in your area, so it’s worth visiting your local schools and asking questions before deciding whether moving is your only option.
We have created a local area guide to help you see which schools are close to the properties that you are looking at, and they also show the Ofsted ratings! Click here to check out our local guides.