Changing schools during the school year ('in-year')


Cornwall Council is responsible for coordinating in-year admissions for all state-funded schools in Cornwall, which includes academies.  An ‘in-year application' is made to change schools during the school year - i.e. not at the normal points of entry (starting in reception, transferring from infant school to junior school or transferring to year seven in a secondary school). You might make an application if you are moving into or out of Cornwall or moving within Cornwall.  You might make an application to change schools even if you are not moving house.

Before you apply, please read the guidance which accompanies the application form:  Changing Schools In-year: Guidance


You can apply for a change of school at any time, however applications will be processed no more than eight school weeks in advance of a school place being required (twelve weeks for service families).

We will generally notify you of the outcome of your application within twenty school days. 

Ready to apply?

You can apply online to change schools in-year using the link below:

Apply online to change schools in-year

For help completing the application, understanding the process or other aspects of school admissions, or if your first language is not English, please contact the Family Information Service on 0800 587 8191 or email

Special Educational Needs

If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC Plan) or a Statement of Special Educational Needs, you do not need to complete an application form as a school place will be identified through a separate process.  Please contact the SEN Assessment and Provision Team for more information on 01872 324242 or via email:  However, if a request has been made for an EHC needs assessment for your child, or your child is currently being assessed to decide whether an EHC Plan is necessary, you will need to make an application using the normal process. 


Changing schools is a significant step and often difficult to avoid because of a house move.  There are also situations when a parent/carer might decide that they are not happy with their child’s current school and have to make the difficult decision about whether or not to apply for a change.  In this situation, we strongly recommend that you first talk to someone at your child’s current school about your reason/s for considering a change as it might be that any issues could be addressed without having to change schools. 

If you decide to apply for a change of school, you may also wish to consider:

  • Transport: you should be aware that your entitlement to home to school transport might change depending on where you are applying, even if you are not changing your address.  Information on transport can be found on the Home to School Transport pages.
  • Implications for secondary-age students: you should be aware of the possible implications of your child not being able to continue studying the same subjects/option choices and their existing coursework not being applicable to a different examining body.

Admission arrangements

For information on how your application will be processed, please read the
Coordinated In Year Admissions Scheme 2016-17.

Please see the Admission Arrangements 2016-2017 page for information on how places will be allocated.

Fair Access Protocol

This document, which is prepared by the local authority and agreed with the majority of schools in Cornwall, aims to ensure that children who haven't been able to secure a school place during the school year, particularly those who are vulnerable, are offered a place at a suitable school as quickly as possible. The Protocol can be seen here: Fair Access Protocol.

Children in care/previously in care

Cornwall Local Authority is committed to ensuring that every child in care and child that was previously in care is admitted to a school which is appropriate to their needs and situation, without delay. Certain legislative provisions support this aim and these, along with Cornwall’s agreed processes, are described in the Local Authority's Children in Care Admissions Protocol for the admission of these children.

Service Families

Cornwall Council acknowledges that service families may be disadvantaged when applying for a school place as they are more likely to need to apply outside the normal admissions round when schools may already be full or be unable to provide a specific address ahead of a posting in good time for the relevant admissions processes.

There are certain legislative provisions for the admission of children of service families and processes within the LA which seek to address the disadvantage that might be experienced by service families.  These are described in the Local Authority's Service Families Protocol along with signposting to sources of support and further information.

Fraudulent applications

Please note that if you make a false statement or omit any relevant and appropriate information in your application you could be subject to investigation and may potentially face criminal proceedings.

The information you supply in the application may be shared, as the law allows, for the purpose of preventing and detecting fraud.

The offer of a school place may be withdrawn if your application is found to be fraudulent. You must notify the Council immediately of any change in your circumstances – failure to do so or providing false or misleading information may lead to prosecution action being taken against you.

As part of the process of ensuring that school places are allocated fairly, Cornwall Council undertakes address checks on a random sample of applications each year to ensure that information submitted by parents/carers is correct.  If you are randomly selected you will receive a letter requesting evidence of your current address. Cornwall Council may also request evidence where it is alerted to potential false statements.  In either of these circumstances, any concerns about the validity of the information provided may lead to investigation and applicants could face criminal proceedings in addition to the withdrawal of the offer of a school place.

Data Protection Statement

The information on this application form is collected by Cornwall Council as data controller in accordance with the data protection principles contained within the Data Protection Act 1998. This information is collected by Cornwall Council to allow it to carry out its functions in relation to the allocation of school places.  Your data may be shared by Cornwall Council with other relevant admission authorities or Council departments (e.g. other local authorities, schools, Cornwall Council’s Democratic Services etc.) for the purpose of dealing with your application and any related matters (e.g. appeals). In addition, the information you provide in connection with your application may be used for the purposes of dealing with matters connected with or ancillary to your child’s education (e.g. school transport, school meals, etc.) or the purpose of updating any other records (e.g. social care, health records, etc.) which either the Council or the schools hold in relation to your child. Your data may also be shared, as the law allows, for the purpose of preventing and detecting fraud.

By completing and submitting your application you give your express consent that all data submitted by you may be processed by us in accordance with the above mentioned purposes. 

The information you provide in connection with your application will be retained by Cornwall Council and/or the school at which your child is placed for the duration of your child’s compulsory education.

You have a right to apply for a copy of the information we hold on you or your child and to correct any inaccuracies.  However, please note this does not include the details of any persons who have notified the Council of alleged fraud or the details of any allegations or investigations that may have been carried out.  In addition, in the event that you no longer wish us to process the information for the purpose(s) provided you may withdraw your consent at any time by giving us written notice. You should understand, however, that we may nevertheless need to continue processing your personal information in accordance with our statutory obligations to the extent permitted by law.

If you have any concerns regarding the processing of your data then please contact the School Admissions Team.