This Admissions policy has been formally adopted by the Governing Body of St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Primary school in Sunderland. At St. Joseph’s, the Governing Body is the Admissions Authority and is responsible for determining the school’s admissions policy

The Planned Admission Number (PAN) for 2016-2017 is 30.

The Admissions Policy Criteria will be applied on an Equal Preference basis.

How and When to apply 
Applications must be made on the Local Authority Common Application Form.  All forms must be returned by the closing date set by the Local Authority.

Late Applications

Any applications received after the closing date will be accepted but considered only after those received by the closing date.


Oversubscription Criteria

Children who have an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan or a statement of Special Educational Need where the school is named as the most appropriate educational setting for the child will be admitted.

Parents are asked to note that admission to the Nursery unit is no guarantee of entry into the main school.

Where there are insufficient places available to meet all parental preferences, priority will be given to applications in the following order:

(First priority in each category will be given to children who will have older siblings attending the school in September 2016)


  1. Looked after Catholic children in the care of a Local Authority or children that were looked after by the Local Authority and immediately after that became subject to an adoption, child arrangements or special guardianship order (see definitions)
  2. Catholic Children whose home address is within the parish(es) served by the school.
  3.  Catholic Children whose home address is outside of the parish(es) served by the school.
  4. Other children who are looked after children in the care of a Local Authority or children that were looked after by a local authority and immediately after that became subject to an adoption, child arrangements or special guardianship order (see definitions).
  5. Children who are baptised members of the Orthodox Churches
  6. Children, who are baptised or dedicated members of other Christian Churches.
  7. Children of other Faith traditions.
  8. Other children.

If applicants are seeking admission under criteria 5 & 6 above, they will be asked for a letter of support to confirm their church membership from their minister or Faith leader.



1.      Definition of Catholic

Children who have been baptised as Catholics or have been formally received into the Catholic Church. All applicants seeking admission under criteria 1, 2 or 3 will be asked to provide evidence that the child has been baptised as a Catholic or has been received into the Catholic Church. A baptismal certificate or a letter from their priest confirming their baptism or reception into the Catholic Church will suffice.


2.      Definition of Children in the care of a Local Authority

A looked after child is a child who is in the care of a local authority in accordance with section 22 of the Children Act 1989 at the time the application for admission to school is made and whom the local Authority has confirmed will still be looked after at the date of admission.


An adoption order is an order made under section 46 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.


A child arrangements order is an order outlining the arrangements as to the person with whom the child will live under section 8 of the Children Act 1989.


A special guardianship order is an order appointing one or more individuals to be a child’s special guardian or guardians (Section 14A Children Act 1989)


3.      Definition of Sibling

Sibling refers to brother or sister, half brother or sister, adopted brother or sister, step brother or sister, or the child of the parent/carer’s partner where the child for whom the school place is sought is living in the same family unit at the same address as that sibling.



Where there are places available for some, but not all applicants within criterion 1, 2, 3 and 5, the length of time elapsing between the date of birth and date of Baptism will be the deciding factor.  The shortest period between the birth of the child and the date of Baptism will receive the higher priority.


In criterion 4, 6 and 7, the tiebreaker will be distance from home to school when measured by the shortest walking route. Measurements will be calculated using the Local Authority’s Geographical Information System (GIS).


Right of Appeal 

Where a parent has been notified that a place is not available for a child, every effort will be made to help the parent to find a place in a suitable alternative school.  Parents who are refused a place have a statutory right of appeal.  Further details of the appeals process are available by writing to the Chair of Governors at the school address.


Home Address

It is the parental address which will be used in applying the admission criteria.  This means that, when stating your choice of school, you should give the parental/guardian address at the time of application.  The address of childminders or other family members who may share in the care of your child should not be quoted as the home address.


Waiting Lists

If your child has been refused admission, you can request that your child’s name be placed on the school’s waiting list. If places become available, we will consider all relevant applications based on the waiting list, which will be maintained for the full academic year.


Application Information

It is very helpful to have an early indication of the number of children to be admitted to the Reception class in the following September.  However, it must be stressed that formal written applications for admission must be made on the form provided by the Local Authority and returned to them by the stated date.   Places will then be allocated by strict application of the above criteria, with no reference to the date of application.  Parents will be notified as to whether or not their child has been allocated a place on 16 April 2016.



Please click here to see Admission Policy 2017-18