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Kent Secondary School Admissions 2016


 Last Updated: October 2015

Please note that this section is rather lengthy, and hence is spread across several pages. You will find the links below.

It is designed primarily for parents resident in Kent, whose children will be transferring to state secondary schools in September 2016. Parents considering a grammar school application should also look at the pages on Kent and Medway Grammar School Admissions and Medway Secondary School Admissions.

Kent Schools


There is more information, advice and comment on the School Admission Code page.  You may also find an article I wrote in September 2014 helpful. 

I have wide experience of the secondary school transfer schemes in Kent and Medway, and am happy to place my expertise at your service, advising on choice of schools and patterns of application, drawing on my extensive local knowledge of the area and its schools. I give talks for parents at several Kent primary and secondary schools by invitation, and am also happy to talk with groups of parents, as well as individuals. For admissions you may well find my telephone consultation service useful.

You will find the full details of the Kent Secondary transfer scheme together with next year's oversubscription rules for individual Foundation and Voluntary Aided Schools on the KCC website here (secondary determined scheme for 2016). You will also find the admission rules for  each school for 2016 entry, and in the Spring any proposed changes for individual schools for 2017.    

For parents applying for any school in Kent outside the normal admission round, including late applications after 1st March when you can put in an application for any Kent secondary school you have not previously considered. Simply download an In Year Casual Application Form and send it to the school you are applying to. You will find further details here.
I liked the basic advice guide issued by parents at Kingshill Primary School.  You will find a simple comparative guide at


The scheme operates for Kent residents, no matter where the schools for which they are applying are situated, and refers to entry in September 2015.


Key Action Scheme Date
Registration for testing opens Monday 1 June 2015
Closing date for registration Wednesday 1 July 2015
Test date for pupils in Kent primary schools Thursday 10 September 2015
Test date for out of county pupils Saturday 12 September 2015
Assessment decision sent to parents Wednesday 14 October 2015
National Closing Date for Secondary Common Application Forms (SCAF) Saturday 31 October 2015
Final closing date for exceptional late applications. Monday 2 November 2015
National Offer Day: e-mails sent after 4pm and letters sent 1st class post Tuesday 1 March 2016
Schools send out welcome letters Not before Friday 4 March 2016
Date by which places should be accepted or declined Thursday 17 March 2016
LA re-allocates places that have become available from the schools' waiting lists Wednesday  13 April 2016 

 In each Local Authority (LA), an admissions booklet will be issued at the beginning of September and published on their website. There is now a national closing date for applications  although grammar school registration process and dates and testing dates differ. Each LA has some differences in procedure, for example Kent parents have four choices, and Medway parents have six choices. These booklets contain details of the all important oversubscription rules, which determine if you will be offered a place if too many people apply.  Do not try and take part in the process without the relevant admissions booklet to guide you. At the time of writing, the 2016 Admissions Booklets for Kent and Medway secondary schools have not been published, but the 2015 version is here. You will find Medway's 2015 booklet here

It is essential that all parents, who are considering entering their child for the Kent tests, register their child on a form obtainable from the primary school or Kent Website,  or online. Your child cannot take the Kent tests if he or she has not been registered. You will not be considered for a grammar school if your child has not sat the Kent tests and they will only be able to take the test late, after 23rd April and be considered as a late applicant whether or not the school is named on the SCAF. Copies of the registration form will be distributed through primary schools and can be downloaded here.

There is nothing to lose by entering your child for the tests. Parents in Kent living near the Medway border may also wish to consider entering their child for the Medway tests, which assesses children on different skills. Further details of Kent grammar school admissions are here.

The Dover Grammar Schools, Folkestone Grammar Schools and Mayfield Grammar School all offer alternative tests that qualify children for admission to their schools only. Admission is by either (but not necessarily both) test.

You will find some possible scenarios on the next page.

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Last modified on Monday, 25 January 2016 12:44

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  • Kent and Medway Primary Allocations 2016

    Kent County Council will rightly celebrate the primary school allocation figures below, sent out today. For even with an additional 591 Kent children in the system above 2015’s figure, the number of children being offered their first choice school has leapt up by 762 to 87.2% of the total number of applications , a record over at least the past six years. In addition, whilst the number of children offered no school of their choice fell to 606, down by 118, also down for the second consecutive year, to 3.4%, again the lowest figure for at least six years.

    Medway Council (Serving You) as usual has sent out an opaque press release on allocation and I have had to best guess the figures in the table below. Although the number of Medway resident applications has increased by just 10 children to 3533, the percentage being offered one of their choices has fallen from 96.4% to less than 96% (historically this suggests 95.75% or lower), whilst the percentage of first choices has remained around the same at around 87.1%, with a slight increase in numbers also around 10 children. However, approximately 150 children with none of their six choices looks to be the highest for many years.

    I will publish further details on oversubscription and vacancies at Reception Level and at Junior schools when I receive them in the next few weeks, but you can see a flavour of the situation from my 2015 article on Kent oversubscription and vacancies here, and for Medway here.

    The continuation below begins with some advice on next steps if you have not received the school of your choice....

    Written on Sunday, 17 April 2016 17:42 Be the first to comment! Read 439 times
  • Academy & Free School News, April 2016

    Seven new primary school academy proposals; compulsory academisation; two new secondary Free Schools announced on site of Chaucer Technology College and in Thanet; academy takeovers of Community College Whitstable and the Charles Dickens School, Broadstairs; plans unveiled for mixed Sixth Form at Sevenoaks Annex; Hoo Peninsula to become first local area to become academies only, creating a squeeze on secondary school options; failure of Medway’s first Free School - Inspire Special Free School, and other sponsors; proposed new primary academy or free school in Paddock Wood; update on Whitehill Primary School – it has been a busy period…..

    Written on Saturday, 09 April 2016 07:47 4 comments Read 941 times
  • Medway Secondary Allocations 2016: Oversubscription and Vacancies

    You will find the initial Medway Secondary school allocation figures here, showing that 84.3% of Medway children were offered places at their first choice school, with just 2.6%, or 77 children, offered none of their six choices, these being allocated a local school by Medway Council. I have also prepared parallel articles on oversubscription and vacancies for Kent grammar and non-selective schools.  I now have more detailed information showing that the most popular school in Medway by far was Brompton Academy, which turned away 108 first preferences, followed by Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School with 42.

    Brompton Academy    SJWMS1          

     The Victory Academy has most vacancies, 110 on allocation, twice as many as the next school, Chatham Grammar Girls’ with 55.

    158 of the 197 children from outside Medway taking up places in local schools at this stage come from Kent, with 113 of these taking up places in Medway Grammar schools, 48 at The Rochester Grammar School. 140 of the 142 Medway children going out county are taking up places at Kent schools, mainly non-selective. 

    As well as further details below, I look at the implications of these figures on the decision to turn Chatham Grammar School for Boys into a co-educational school from September 2017.

    Written on Saturday, 26 March 2016 07:50 1 comment Read 695 times
  • Oversubscription and vacancies in Kent non-selective schools on allocation for September 2016.

    This article looks across Kent to the key oversubscription and vacancy situations in non-selective schools District by District. Thanet with its six schools (after Marlowe Academy was closed last year) is probably the area under most pressure, containing the most oversubscribed school in the county, St George’s CofE Foundation School in Broadstairs, turning away 161 first choices, just 14 spaces in one school, and 113 children allocated to a school not on their list, nearly a quarter of the total Local Authority allocations in Kent. St George’s CofE school in Gravesham comes second being 123 first choices oversubscribed in another pressure District along with Dartford, although successful Grammar school appeals will ease the pressures over the next few months.

    St Georges Foundation

    St Georges 3 

    At the other end of the scale, Dover District has a quarter of its spaces vacant and five schools in the county have over a third of their places vacant.

    Kent has seen an extra 627 net places put into its non-selective schools, above the numbers planned for admission this year, and 460 more than the final figure in 2015, to meet rising rolls in several areas, biggest expansion being in Tunbridge Wells with an additional 121 places being pumped in.

    As a result, the number of pupils offered their first choice rose by 363, and the number being offered none of their four choices fell by 213 children to just 428, the lowest figure for some years. However, this made little difference to the pressure on popular schools which has never been greater.

    I look at individual schools below, mixed in with various news items, and you will find my previous article on allocations published at the beginning of March here. You will find an article describing the grammar school situation below, with Medway here. You will find 2015 non-selective data here.

    Written on Friday, 18 March 2016 20:33 Be the first to comment! Read 1301 times
  • Oversubscription and vacancies in Kent Grammar schools on allocation for September 2016

    This article looks across Kent to the key oversubscription and vacancy situations in grammar schools. Main pressure points are in West and North West Kent, led by Dartford Grammar, 226 first choice applications oversubscribed,  followed by the three West Kent super selectives and Dartford Grammar School for Girls. There is then a sharp fall to the next most popular school, Wilmington Grammar School for Boys but still at 49 first choices rejected. At the other end of the scale, ten grammar schools have vacancies on allocation. Medway schools here

    dgs          togs

    Kent has seen an extra 91 net places put into its grammar schools, above the numbers planned for admission this year, and 244 more than in 2015, to meet rising rolls in several areas.

    I look at individual schools below, and you will find my previous article on allocations published at the beginning of March here, and for 2015 here. Non-selective schools here.

    Written on Thursday, 17 March 2016 22:31 7 comments Read 1582 times
  • Academy, Free School and UTC News, February 2016.

    As I was preparing to publish this article, local academy news is overtaken by the ideological decision to force all schools in England to have converted or started on the route to become academies by 2020.  Whilst I normally confined myself to matters relating only to Kent and Medway on this website, the impact of this appalling decision on local schools is such that I have added a couple of paragraphs at the foot of the page.

    As the conversion rate to academise has reduced to a trickle before this news, there are just two new Academies for February, Manor Community Primary School, Dartford, and Twydall Primary School in Gillingham, the latter having finally seen its future settled as it has been sponsored by Rainham Mark Grammar School after a very difficult failed take-over attempt by the Learning Schools Academy Trust.

    There are several new converter applications: Simon Langton Girls Grammar; Upton Junior, Broadstairs; Temple Hill and Oakfield Primaries, Dartford.

    News below about: two new build primary academies; Maidstone School of Science and Technology (or rather lack of news!); Castle Community College; Cranbrook School; Chatham Grammar School for Boys; Royal Harbour Academy (not an academy) and the Coastal Academies Trust; and a new 11-14 extension (or is it?) to Leigh University Technical College.  

    Written on Wednesday, 16 March 2016 22:16 Be the first to comment! Read 454 times