Croydon schools receiving new pupil applications this month will be able to take 460 extra children in total next year as the council continues to meet rising demand.
Pupils starting or moving school next academic year can now apply, and the list of available schools now includes two new primaries and nine expanded schools.
The council is partway through a three-year drive to create more than 1,300 extra places by 2018, and parents have until 31 October 2015 to apply for secondary schools, and until 15 January 2016 for primary schools.
The parents of children turning four between now and the end of August 2016 should apply for primary school, and parents of children currently in Year 6 should apply for secondary school.
There will also be two new schools at Oasis Academy Fiveways (90 reception places) and Krishna Avanti (60 places).
Four primary schools – Heavers Farm, St John’s C of E, Christ Church and Chipstead Valley Academy – will permanently expand by 30 places each, subject to planning approval for expanded buildings.
The Archbishop Lanfranc secondary school will increase by 70 places, and details will be announced soon on the council’s work with headteachers and governing bodies to deliver four additional temporary primary classes.
The 2016/17 application process comes weeks after Croydon schoolchildren improved on last year’s exam performance at both GCSEs and A-level.
Croydon sixth-formers got an A*-E pass rate of 98.2% – higher than both the national rate of 98.1% and last year’s Croydon average pass rate of 97.23%. At GCSE, 61% of pupils achieved five A* to C GCSEs including English and Mathematics this year, compared to 56.3% in 2014 and a 2014 national average of 52.6%.
“We’re making great progress at meeting huge demand for our schools, and they’ll get more popular if secondary exam results and the borough’s population keep rising.
“Although demand for places is high, I urge parents to apply on time because that’s the best way to get your top-choice school.
“It’s also never been easier to apply thanks to our online form, and I’m hoping for a repeat of last year when 100% of parents who applied on time applied online.”
Councillor Alisa Flemming, cabinet member for children, young people and learning
Wherever possible, children will be offered their top-choice school if there is an available space. Putting in additional preferences will increase, not reduce, parents’ chances of getting a school they want for their child.
Parents should also check on each school’s admissions policy to make sure they do not put their child down for a school that would be unlikely to accept them.
Those who apply on time for their child to transfer to secondary school will find out on 1 March 2016, while primary school allocations are announced on 18 April 2016.
For more information, visit the council’s dedicated web page on school admissions.