Primary School Places

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 24th May 2022.

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Photo of Onkar Sahota Onkar Sahota Labour

There is significant variation in the number of children being offered their first preference for primary school. Although the average from all of London is 87.9%, this ranges widely from 94% to 66% by borough.

Given your previous comments on the importance of providing a good school place for every child in London, would you please outline what it is that makes one borough more successful at awarding a first-choice primary school than another?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

London has the largest volume of applications to schools nationally and there is a lot of movement across Local Authority boundaries. Some boroughs may not offer as many first preferences to their residents as other Local Authorities do, but they may be providing a high number of first preferences for pupils from surrounding boroughs. For example, a school near the border of two boroughs may admit more students from the neighbouring borough than from their own, which would be reflected in the statistics.

I again would like to stress the importance I place on every child in London having a good school place. There are enough school places to meet overall demand in London and the standard of education is very high, with 93% of schools being rated good or outstanding by Ofsted.