School places table

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Hucknall parents are being forced to send their children to schools out of town as there are not enough places for all applicants.

It means parents with children already in a school are having to send their siblings to an alternative school in a different town or village.

The situation has sparked an outcry amongst distraught families who are saying that the situation should never be allowed to happen.

“I have three children of school age who will now be going to three different schools,” said Claire Chamberlain of Levertons Place, whose child has been offered a place at Bestwood Village. “How can I be expected to be in three places at the same time? I don’t even have access to a car every day. It’s impossible.”

Mrs Chamberlain has a daughter in National Academy and another in Hillside where an application for her four year-old was rejected, even on appeal. This means her twice daily school run will add up to 17 miles.

“I’ve had an attachment with Hillside for 13 years with my older children who have attended and I just want my youngest to attend the same school. Is it too much to ask?”

Nine families appealed against their rejection of places at Hillside, with eight already having siblings at the school but to no avail.

“It’s not the school’s fault,” added Emma Taylor of Braunton Close, whose eight year-old attends Hillside but whose four year-old has been offered a place at Annie Holgate.

“How can you expect parents to take their children to different schools when they are only young. It means one child will be late every day,” added Emma.

“The authority are also stressing the importance of not being late and threaten parents with fines, so how can this situation be allowed to happen?”

Several of the families who applied to Hillside only made one preference in the application system which the authority say has led to them being at the bottom of the list.

“To give parents the best chance of getting a school they want, we encourage parents to make four preferences on their application form,” said Nottinghamshire County Council’s manager for school places, Ian Webster.

“Where a place can be offered at more than one of the schools listed, the council will offer a place at the highest preferred school where a place is available. However, in cases where all preferred schools are oversubscribed, we will make a mandatory offer and this may be at a school further away from the home address.”

The table below shows the current situation in the town for school places. (Note: The same child could be on more than one waiting list).