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Primary Admissions to Reception Class 2024

If you have a child with a date of birth between 1st September 2019 and 31st August 2020, please contact Pupil and Student Services on 01204 332143/ 332137 to register your child's details. 

The closing date for Primary admissions is January 2024. If you have applied you will receive an offer letter in April 2024, along with this you will receive an appeal form if Bolton Local Authority has not been able to offer you your school of preferred choice. 

Admissions Criteria 2024

St James CE Primary School, Farnworth is an Academy. The Academy Trust is the admission authority for the school, and the school is required to act in accordance with the School Admissions Code.

The following arrangements for admission to the Reception Year in September 2024 are similar to those that were in place prior to the school becoming an Academy in 2016.

The admissions process is coordinated by Bolton Council (the local authority). Applications for admission to the Reception Year in the normal admissions round must be made on the local authority’s common application form. Details of all the applications made will be forwarded to the school by the local authority.

Admission arrangements for admission to the Reception Year in September 2024

The school’s published admission number (PAN) for admission to the Reception Year in September 2024 is 45. If no more than 45 applications are received for admission to the Reception Year, all applicants will be offered places.

The school will admit all children with an Educational Health Care Plan (EHCP) which names the school in part 4 of the EHCP.

Where demand for admission to the Reception Year exceeds the number of places available the following oversubscription criteria will then apply:

Oversubscription Criteria: 

When the number of applications received is greater than the number of remaining places available (after the admission of any pupils with a statement of special educational needs or an EHCP naming the school), the decision on which children will be allocated places will be based on the following oversubscription criteria, which will be applied in the order of priority set out below:

1. Children in public care and previously looked after children.
This includes any "looked after child", “previously looked after children” and any child who was previously looked after but immediately after being looked after became subject to an adoption, residence or special guardianship order. ‘Looked after’ means that the child was (a) in the care of a local authority, or (b) being provided with accommodation by a local authority in the exercise of their social services functions. This criteria also includes looked-after children and all previously looked-after children who appear (to the admission authority) to have been in state care outside of England and ceased to be in state care as a result of being adopted.


2. Vulnerable children for whom there is a child protection plan or has been within a 12-month period (see definition under section 47 of the Children Act 1989).

3. Children who will have an older sibling in Years Reception to Year 6 of the school at the time of application and date of admission. Sibling includes full, step, half, foster and adopted brothers and sisters living at the same address.


4. Children whose parent(s)/guardian(s) is in regular attendance at public worship at least once a month for at least the year immediately prior to the date of application for admission to the school either:
a) at a Church of England church within Seven Saints parish, or,
b) at another Christian church that is a member of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) or the Evangelical Alliance.
Applicants seeking admission under this criterion should complete the Supplementary Information Form and return it to the school by the closing date. Verification of regular attendance of the child’s parent(s)/guardian(s) at public worship must be provided by a member of the clergy or other designated church officer. A list of Churches in membership of CTBI can be viewed at and those in membership of the Evangelical Alliance can be viewed at

5. Children whose exceptional medical condition or disability mean that their needs can only be met at this school. Parents applying under this criterion must provide professional supporting evidence in the form of a letter from the child’s GP/consultant. This must set out the particular reasons why the school is the most suitable for the child and the difficulties that would be caused if the child had to attend another school.


6. Any other children, with priority given to those living nearest to the school.



Where there are more applicants for the available places within a category, priority will be given to children who live nearest to the school (geographical proximity). Under this category, the remaining places will be offered to children who live nearest to the school. The distance will be measured in a straight line using Routefinder, a computerised mapping system that measures from the child’s normal home address point to the designated main entrance to the school. The ‘normal’ home address of the child will be taken to be the home in which the child sleeps for the majority of the school week. Parents may be asked to show proof of address. For children of UK Service personnel and other Crown Servants returning to the area proof of the posting is all that is required.

Children from multiple births

Where a single place remains at the school and the application being considered is for twins etc., the Academy Trust will allocate above the admission number to accommodate each child if it is possible to do so.

Further information including closing dates for applications can be obtained from Bolton Council.

Special Educational Needs

If your child is undergoing Statutory Assessment you will need to complete an application for admission. For further advice contact the Inclusion and Statutory Assessment Service 01204 332207


If you are not happy with the place you are offered by the Local Authority, you can appeal. You will receive an appeal form in the post with your offer which will be posted out in April 2024. Alternatively, you can visit the Bolton Council's appeals page.

Transferring between Primary Schools

Bolton Council is responsible for coordinating admissions into all schools for those families resident within Bolton Metropolitan Borough.

This includes:-

  • Children wishing to change from one school to another within the borough

  • Children who have arrived in the borough requiring a school place

  • Children wishing to move from an independent school to a school maintained by the Council

  • Children resident in the borough but requiring admission to a school in another borough


If you live outside Bolton borough you must make an application through the school admission process for that authority.


Do I need to complete an application form?

The application form that parents/ carers will be requested to complete when requesting admission to a new school can be found by clicking here or you can contact Pupil and Student Services. It is important that your child continues to attend their current school whilst your application is being considered. However, it is recognised that for families who have moved into the borough this may not always be possible. You must, in such circumstances, inform the Headteacher at their previous school of the arrangements you are making.

Please click here to find out how to apply for a place at a Bolton Secondary school.

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