Starting secondary school

Apply for a secondary school place for September 2020, if your child was born between 1 September 2008 and 31 August 2009.

If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan or statement of special educational needs you don’t need to apply through this admission process. Please contact instead.


All secondary school offers will go out on 2 March 2020.

 Each school you have named on your application will be given a status. Here's what they mean:

  • Place offered - your child has been offered a place at this school
  • Not offered - this school has not been offered. This school was named as a higher preference on your application form than the school that was offered
  • Declined - your child has not been offered a place at this school because one of your higher preferences has been offered
  • Withdrawn - this preference has not been considered and has been withdrawn. This is usually because this is a preference for a grammar school and your child had not been assessed as grammar.


  • if you apply online you'll receive your child's offer by email after 4pm on 2 March 2020. We can't guarantee the time you will receive your email, as this is dependent on your email provider. Medway Council has no control over an email after it has been sent
  • if you apply by paper, we'll post your offer letter on 2 March 2020, so you will receive it after that date
  • your offer will come from the local authority where you live, not where the school is offered
  • we can’t guarantee your child will get a place at one of the schools you named on your application
  • a Medway Test grammar assessment does not guarantee your child a grammar school place

What you can do next

Once you receive your offer you need to decide whether to accept or refuse the school place.

Information on how to do this will be in the Next Steps Guide published on offer day.

You must accept or refuse your offer by Tuesday 31 March 2020.

  • You should accept the place offered, even if you're looking to go on a waiting list or appeal, as there's no guarantee you will be successful.
  • An accepted place can always be released later, but a refused place can't always be reinstated.
  • Refusing a school place doesn't give you a higher priority on waiting lists or in appeals.

If you're unhappy with the offer

If you’re unhappy with the school place we offered your child, you can:

  • ask us to add your child to the waiting list for any Medway school (you can't ask to go on the waiting list of a grammar school if your child hasn't been assessed as grammar under the Medway Test)
  • submit an appeal for any of the schools you named on your application that have not offered your child a place.

How we decide what school is offered to your child

All school places are offered based on each school's oversubscription criteria.

This means you're not guaranteed a place at the school(s) you named on your application. This will depend on how oversubscribed the school is and the priority of other applicants.

We will, however, try our best to offer your child a place at one of your highest preferred schools.

For children who are assessed as Grammar under the Medway Test, the majority are offered places at a grammar school, but sometimes we offer them a place at a non-grammar school if it's named as a higher preference on the application, or if we're unable to meet any of your preferred schools and there are no Grammar places available.

The schools you name are not told which preference you have given them. The order of your preferences is between you and Medway Council for the purpose of offering places only.

If you are not offered one of your preferences

If we have not been able to offer your child a place at one of the schools named on your application, this will either be because:

  • there were more applications for a school than places available and other applicants had a higher priority for a place when the school's oversubscription criteria were applied
  • it's a grammar school and your child has not passed the Medway Test

If you are not offered a place at any of the schools you named on your application, we’ll allocate your child a place at the nearest school to your home address with a vacancy.

If your child is assessed as Grammar under the Medway Test, we will try to allocate them a grammar school place. This may not be possible if all grammar school places have already been allocated.