Secondary school admissions

Transferring to secondary school September 2024

If you applied for a secondary school place for September 2024, you will receive an email with the outcome of your application by 11am on Friday 1 March 2024. The email will contain a link to log in to your portal account to accept your offer and/or apply to join waiting list/s. 

Accepting or declining the offer

You are strongly advised to accept the offer you receive on 1 March. This means you can always be sure you have a school place. If you accept the offer we have made, it does not stop you joining a waiting list or submitting an appeal for another school. 

If you decline the place you have been offered, and your appeals are unsuccessful, we will only be able to offer you a place at a school which is undersubscribed. These are currently Broadoak School in Partington, Lostock High School in Stretford and Wellacre Academy in Flixton.

If you want to decline the offer because you have made other arrangements, such as attending an independent school or choosing to home educate, you can tell us this in the portal. 

Waiting lists

If you have been refused admission to a preferred school you can add your child’s name to the waiting lists via the portal. If you want to add a school that you have not previously applied for, or that was listed as a lower preference than your allocated school, you should email us and we will do this for you.

Waiting lists are not run on a first come first served basis. Waiting lists must be run until the end of December. Places must be allocated in line with the oversubscription criteria for that school.

Your right to appeal

Admission authorities must offer the parent’s preferred school whenever possible but this can only be done when there are enough places for everyone. Where the number of applications received are more than the number of places available at a school, then the oversubscription criteria must be applied.

This may mean that all of the available places are offered to applicants with a higher priority than your child. This is the only reason your application can be refused. If this happens, you have the right to appeal to an independent appeal panel.

Get more detailed information about secondary school admission appeals.

Important advice for Altrincham and Sale residents

We provided detailed secondary application guidance at the point of application. 

Additional advice was provided to applicants in the Sale and Altrincham areas where schools are significantly oversubscribed and it is frequently the case that some catchment area children do not achieve places in their preferred schools. This advice was provided to applicants as by post to their home address and as part of the online application process. We strongly advised you to carefully read this advice and follow it.

Late applications

The closing date for secondary school applications was 31 October 2023. If you missed this deadline for any reason, you can still submit an application. Any application received, or change made, after 31 October is classed as a late application.

This means it will only be considered after all the applications received on time have been processed. Late applications will be considered in line with the published admission arrangements and with regard to the number of available places.

All applications are to be made through the Trafford application portal:

Apply for a school place

Information about schools

These are the secondary schools in Trafford where you do not need to sit a test to be considered for a place:

Grammar schools (selective schools)

If you want to be considered for a grammar school place, you must first pass the entrance test for that school. You should contact your preferred grammar school/s directly to register to sit the test. 

Five of the seven grammar schools in Trafford are in the Trafford Consortium and share the same entrance test. You register to sit the test at one of these schools on the test date of 5 September 2023. The outcome of this test can be considered by any of the five schools if you have chosen this option on the entrance test application form.

The other two grammar schools have a different test, scheduled for 22 September 2023:

Key dates

  • 31 October 2023 - Closing date for applications
  • 1 March 2024 - National offer day where all applicants receive their offer of a place
  • April 2024 - Review of allocation of vacancies

Allocation of places

Each school has a set number of places to allocate. If more people apply than the number of places available, it is oversubscribed. When this happens, the school uses the oversubscription criteria to decide who gets a place. This is the case for places in the initial allocation and also in the review process. You can find the oversubscription criteria for each school in their admission policies.

Special educational needs

If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) there is a different process for transferring to secondary school. You should receive information about this process from your school in the autumn term. If you have not received this, you can contact Trafford’s EHC Assessment Team at

Admission arrangements

Each year we consult on our admission arrangements and formally agree them:

Contact us