ALL but three children have been granted a place at their first choice secondary school in Hartlepool this year – one of the highest rates in the UK.
Only three applications in the town were not granted their first choice school to start in September this year with 99.7 of Year 6 pupils given a place at their first choice school and 99.9 per cent allocated a place at one of their top three.
A total of 972 youngsters applied for secondary school places in Hartlepool starting later this year, 86 less applications than last year.
Of those, 969 youngsters have been guaranteed a spot at their first choice school.
The figure is an increase on last year which saw 97.5 per cent of the 1,058 applicants granted a spot at their first choice school.
This year also sees an increase on the number of applications granted a spot at one of their first three choices, 99.9 per cent compared to 99.5 per cent in 2011.
Councillor Cath Hill, Hartlepool Borough Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, said: “We are extremely pleased that such a high percentage of pupils in Hartlepool received their first preference.
“The increase in 2012 is partly down to a lower birth-rate in this particular year group and also because parental preference is spread equally across Hartlepool schools this year.”
Of the 4,692 applications made in County Durham this year, 97.5 per cent of children were allocated their first choice school to start in September.
The figure is an increase on last year which saw 96.7 per cent of the 5,181 applications given their first choice.
Also in County Durham, 99.4 per cent of applications were allocated at least one of their first three choices, an increase compared to last year’s figure of 99.1 per cent.