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School admissions

Bedford Borough Council has changed to a predominantly 2 tier system of primary and secondary schools. 

Children normally begin their primary education at a lower/primary school which serves the area where they live, that is, a school serving the local catchment area.

Children are normally admitted to lower/primary school at the start of or during the Reception year, that is the school year in which they become 5 years old.

Many schools also have nursery units or nursery classes for younger children.

Most children will transfer at 11+ (end of year 6) to a secondary school

However, some children will transfer at 9+ (the end of Year 4) to a local middle school and then at 13+ (end of Year 8) to a local upper school.

Most secondary/upper schools have a 6th form and pupils may remain at the school up to the age of 18 or 19 years.

Parents have a right to express a preference for a school which is not within the catchment area if applicable, but places can only be offered if there is space available. If the number of requests for places at a school exceeds the number of places available, places will be allocated in accordance with the Admissions Criteria for that school.


Find an Ofsted inspection report for all schools, colleges, childminders, nurseries and children’s homes in England.

The Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) has changed the way in which they inspect and report on schools with a education inspection framework (EIF).

Contact the School Admissions Service

Tel - 01234 718120

School Admissions Service
Borough Hall
Cauldwell Street
Bedford MK42 9AP