Find out which schools are in your area
Some schools serve Areas of Prime Responsibility (APR). Where an APR exists, the area indicates to you the schools which normally serve your home address. As the local authority, we give priority to children who live within the APR of a school who have expressed a preference for an APR school. There is however no guarantee that places will be offered to all those living within the APR.
- Find out which schools are in your area
- Local sibling links
- Use your child’s permanent home address
- Things to consider in advance of a house move
Find out which schools are in your area
Maps showing the location of each school are available in the primary school admissions guide and secondary school admissions guide. If you are unsure which schools are in your area, you can speak to us on 01454 868008.
If you live in an area covered by an APR we strongly recommend that you indicate a preference for a school that is located in that APR. This will increase your chances of getting a place at a local school, should your highest ranking preference not be met. This might be if your highest ranking school is over-subscribed from applicants living within that school’s APR or living closer than you and/or any higher priority applications.
You can find your nearest school on our schools directory. Please note, the distance shown is only intended as a guide and the actual distance used to process your application is measured in a direct line between the address point of the child’s home and a central point within the main school buildings using the Local Authority’s computerised mapping system.
Local sibling links – younger brothers and sisters
Many parents/carers express a preference for younger brothers and sisters to attend the same school. Our over-subscription criteria for allocating places to community and voluntary controlled schools gives some priority to local siblings. You should be aware that a local sibling is not the same as a sibling. In South Gloucestershire children are defined as local siblings if:
- they live within the APR; or,
- where there is no APR, local siblings will be deemed to be those living up to a maximum of three miles from school by straight line measurement; or,
- where the distance is over three miles but the school is still the nearest school;
- they are full or half brother or sister; or
- they are adoptive brother or sister; or
- they are children of the same household;
- the older sibling is already in attendance at the preferred school and will be in attendance when the applicant child starts (statutory school age only).
The offer of a place at any particular school does not guarantee an offer of a place for a sibling at a later date. It is important that you consider stating a preference for your local/nearest school, particularly if you have younger children who you would like to attend the same school in later years.
Different admission authorities will vary in the priority that they give to siblings, some only give priority to children who live within the Area of Prime Responsibility and others (including South Gloucestershire admission authority) also have an "out of area" sibling criteria. You will need to consult the relevant admission authority policy to be clear of the criteria for your preferred school(s).
Use your child’s permanent home address
You must apply using your child’s permanent home address. The home address is considered to be where the child lives most of the time with his or her parent(s) or carer(s). We cannot accept an address of a business, relative, friend, childminder, a temporary address or an address of a house it is intended to move to or one that is not yet habitable. The only exceptions are for children of UK service personnel for whom special arrangements apply.
We reserve the right to seek documentary evidence to support a claim of residence.
Where a child spends time with each parent/carer at two different addresses, we will ask for proof of the arrangements and will determine the appropriate address to be used in allocating a school place. In reaching this decision, evidence may be requested to show the address to which any Child Benefit is paid, and from which the child is registered with a medical GP. Any other evidence provided by parents/carers will also be considered in reaching a decision on the home address for admissions purposes.
Things to consider in advance of a house move
If you are considering a house move, in advance of submitting an admission application you will most likely want to research local schools that serve your new address. Often parents/carers of more than one child may want to reassure themselves that their younger child will have a good chance of obtaining an offer of a school place at the same school as their elder sibling. In these circumstances, parents/carers are advised to consider the following:
- the schools closest to your new home address/which schools serve your new local area
- the admission arrangements for your preferred school(s) for the relevant year of admission
- the consequences of moving house on the outcome of your admission application for younger children
- the distance from your new home to your preferred school(s) and how you will get your child to school
Be aware that sometimes a house move can mean families with more than one child no longer qualify for admission to their preferred school(s), under the local sibling criterion. This can cause disappointment for families who want their children to attend the same school. While there can be no guarantee about the outcome of admission applications, parents/carers are strongly advised to study the information contained in the admission guide.
Note that all admission authorities are required to publish details of their admission arrangements 18 months in advance of the school year before the arrangements are to apply. For admission in September 2023 this means that parents/carers were able to read and access the arrangements from March 2022 onwards.