Starting school

Children are normally admitted to school at the start of or during the reception year, that is the school year in which they become 5.

You must apply for a place in the reception class that starts in September 2024 if your child was born between 1 September 2019 and 31 August 2020.

Check out our Local Offer website for information on supporting your child to be ready for the transition to school.

Make sure you read the Starting School booklet (PDF) to find out what you need to do

Apply online

The deadline to make an application has now passed.

If you need to apply for a ‘Starting School 2024’ place you must now use the Starting School 2024 application form (PDF). This form has been designed so that you can fill it in electronically and then attach it to an email and send it back to us at

If you live in Bedford Borough you must apply through us. If we're not your council, you can find out who is on GOV.UK.

If you are applying for a nursery place you must contact the nursery direct - do not use our online system.

To apply for Willow Grove Primary School, please contact, you cannot apply via our online system for this school. You should submit your other preference via our online system as normal.

Please contact the School Admissions Service if you need advice about applying for a school place.

Closing date for applications

The deadline for online applications was 15 January 2024.

For more detailed information about the timescales go to Bedford Borough Council Admission Arrangements 2024.

National Offer Day is 16 April 2024

If you have applied online, you will receive an email to let you know the outcome of your application. In addition, as the results will be posted to the online system overnight, you can log into your account to access the result of your application. If you have not applied online, we will post a letter to you on this day.

If you have not been offered a place at one of your preferred schools, please see information about the number of offers, places at each school and how to lodge an appeal (PDF).