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Byline: Jasbir Authi

THERE were ts ears of joy - and despair - today as thousands of parents found out whether their children had won places at their first choice primary school.

The news was good for more than four out of five of the 15,000 families who applied for September's intake with 85 per cent - 12,821 - being offered their top selection.

But that still left more than 2,000 parents with the anguish of missing out on their top ranked reception class.

The first choice offer rate was fractionally up on last year by 0.1 per cent. And the number of families offered any of their preferred schools increased by 0.5 per cent to 95.7 per cent.

That left a total of 649 parents - 4.3 per cent - offered a place at a school that was not one of their choices.

Among those celebrating was dad David Logue, whose son Joseph was offered a place at The Abbey Catholic Primary School in Erdington. Mr Logue, a 35-year-old teacher from Wylde Green, Sutton Cold-field, said: "I'm delighted but I was pretty certain he would get in as he is a baptised Catholic and his sister Elizabeth is currently in reception there.

"So he fulfilled the criteria for entry.

"The school makes you feel as if you are at the heart of everything it does.

"We attend mass at the Abbey church every week and the Catholic ethos is very much reflected in the work the school does."

A Birmingham City Council spokesman said: "We know that school preference places are an important decision for parents / carers. The school admissions team processed over 15,000 applications which were carried out on an equal and fair basis."

More than 7,700 families who applied online for reception places in Birmingham schools discovered their fate in emails sent yesterday.

The remaining applicants were sent letters which were due to arrive by first class post today.

Birmingham is in the grip of a school places crisis sparked by a baby boom and nine schools are currently being expanded to cater for September's intake.

Parents must indicate whether they will accept the place they have been offered by May 9 or return appeal forms by May 22.

Are you happy with the school place your child has been offered? Email or call 0121 234 5430.
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Apr 24, 2012
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