Top of the class for first-choice places

Hilling­don rises to school ap­pli­ca­tion chal­lenge

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Kather­ine Cle­men­tine

EV­ERY ap­pli­cant for a sec­ondary school place in Hilling­don has been suc­cess­ful, de­spite a record num­bers of ap­pli­cants.

Young peo­ple and their fam­i­lies in the bor­ough were told if they got their first choice or not af­ter with the re­lease of sec­ondary school ad­mis­sions re­sults on Tues­day, March 1.

A to­tal of 91% of Hilling­don ap­pli­cants will go to one of their top three schools, and ev­ery child has a sec­ondary school place, with help from brand new school build­ings launched for Septem­ber 2016.

Hilling­don Coun­cil are pleased with the re­sult as the bor­ough has seen 8% rise in ap­pli­ca­tions – more than dou­ble the Lon­don wide in­crease of 3.3%.

This year Hilling­don re­ceived a record high of 3,323 ap­pli­ca­tions for sec­ondary school places, yet it has of­fered the high­est per­cent­age of first choice and top three pref­er­ences across West Lon­don.

71% of chil­dren ap­ply­ing for school places in Hilling­don have been of­fered their first choice of school, out­strip­ping neigh­bour­ing lo­cal bor­oughs.

In Houn­slow, fam­i­lies are only be­ing of­fered their first pref­er­ence in 64% of cases, with 65% for Eal­ing and 70% in Har­row.

Cllr David Sim­monds, Hilling­don cab­i­net mem­ber for education and chil­dren’s ser­vices, said: “In Hilling­don, the coun­cil is re­spond­ing to ever in­creas­ing de­mand for sec­ondary school places by in­vest­ing £315 mil­lion into our schools ex­pan­sion and build­ing pro­gramme, one of the largest in Lon­don.

Hilling­don Coun­cil are spend­ing £145 mil­lion on sec­ondary schools, which in­cludes re­build­ing North­wood and Ab­bots­field Schools, to “hon­our their com­mit­ment” of pro­vid­ing high qual­ity places for chil­dren close to their homes.

Cllr Sim­monds added: “I was es­pe­cially glad to hear that North­wood School, which will of­fer 1,080 places when build­ing work is com­pleted in the au­tumn, has seen an 88% in­crease in first pref­er­ence ap­pli­ca­tions, and will be full on of­fers day.

“This is a great vote of con­fi­dence for education in the bor­ough and one we plan to up­hold.”

Con­struc­tion at North­wood School has been un­der way through­out 2015 in or­der to com­plete for ad­mis­sions in Septem­ber 2016.

Mark An­der­son, head­teacher at North­wood School, said, “I would like to thank the Lon­don Bor­ough of Hilling­don, in par­tic­u­lar Coun­cil­lors Ray Pud­di­foot and David Sim­monds, for the be­lief that they have shown in us. Our con­tin­u­ing ex­cep­tional ex­am­i­na­tion re­sults and the fact that we are over­sub­scribed for the open­ing in Septem­ber demon­strate our de­ter­mi­na­tion to be­come a flag­ship school, pro­duc­ing well ed­u­cated, well-rounded young peo­ple for their next steps in life.”

For more in­for­ma­tion about post al­lo­ca­tion pro­cesses visit www. h i l l i n g d o n . g o v. u k / sec­ondary.

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