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Starting school: Application process for places at Bishop's Stortford's 12 primaries starts Monday November 2

The process of applying for a place to start school next September at one of Bishop's Stortford's 12 primaries opens on Monday (November 2).

Parents and carers will have 10 weeks in which to apply, but education authority Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) is urging them to do so in plenty of time.

Last year, nearly 98% of children under 11 in the county were allocated places at one of their four ranked primary, junior or middle schools.

In Bishop's Stortford, Avanti Meadows at St Michael's Hurst – the first of two new primaries for the Stortford North development – will join All Saints, Hillmead, Manor Fields, Northgate, Richard Whittington, St Joseph's, St Michael's, Summercroft, Thorley Hill, Thorn Grove and Windhill21 in taking on four-year-olds at the start of their education in September 2021.

The new primary can accommodate up to 90 reception class pupils and grow to 630 across its seven year groups. It will also have a 26-place nursery. It was supposed to have opened in September this year but this was put back 12 months because of delays caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The easiest way to apply for an under-11s school place is to complete the online application form at www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/admissions . Online applications can be amended at any time before the January 15 closing date, and you can access your school offer before allocation letters are received and accept your school place online. Last year, 99% of parents applied this way.

Terry Douris, HCC's cabinet member for education, said: “We’re not always able to completely satisfy parental preference, despite working very hard to achieve this. I would urge parents/carers to carefully consider the schools they rank, to make realistic preferences and to look at the school’s website before applying.”

A leaflet explaining how to apply will be distributed at the start of November. Copies will be posted directly to families with children of reception age and distributed by schools to children in Year 2 in infant schools and Year 4 in first schools.

Parents without internet access can request a paper application form that must be returned direct to the Admissions and Transport team. Application forms cannot be returned to any Hertfordshire school.

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