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Big rise in first preferences for Devon primaries

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There has been a big increase in the number of Devon families being allocated their first preference primary school place this September.

And the percentage of families being offered one of their three preferences has also improved.

Figures published today (Friday 16 April) reveal that 7,232 applications were made across the county.

And 99.6 per cent of families have been offered a place at one of their three preferred schools – up from 98.3 per cent last year.

The new figures show that 97.7 per cent of the families who applied to Devon County Council for a place in a county primary have got their first preference. That’s compared to 94.6 per cent last year.

Altogether, 1.7 per cent were offered their second preference and 0.2 per cent their third preference.

Parents will be notified of their places today (Fri) and the county council’s admissions team will be available to deal with enquiries supported by the schools team at Devon’s Customer Service Centre.

Dawn Stabb, Head of Education and Learning
Dawn Stabb, Head of Education and Learning

Devon County Council’s Head of Education, Dawn Stabb, said: “We have been working hard to expand the number of places that are available and it is therefore very gratifying that we have been able to accommodate the vast majority of children in one of their three preferred schools. In fact the percentage of families who have been offered one of their three preferences is the highest ever.

“Because of the pandemic, our teams have been mostly working independently at home. Nevertheless they have managed a high number of applications and finalised the allocation of places ahead of the national deadline.

“Our forward planning has also meant the crisis has not had an impact on the building projects required to meet the demand for places.

“This is a testament to the hard work of the dedicated staff who work in our admissions and school place planning teams and the partnership and cooperation we have received from the headteachers and governors of Devon’s primary schools.”