All state-funded schools must have admission arrangements that clearly set out how pupils will be admitted. In England, there is no automatic allocation of school places, even when children are attending an attached pre-school or feeder school, or have older siblings already attending. Parents or carers need to apply for a place.

The statutory admission framework ensures that all state-funded schools adopt fair and lawful admission practices. This topic outlines the mandatory requirements, as set out in the School Admissions Code, and also explains the appeals process and how to deal with complaints about admission decisions.

Information about keeping admission registers can be found in the Registers and Records topic.

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