Admission Criteria

St Mary’s is a Roman Catholic Primary School provided by the Diocese of Salford and is maintained by the Bury Local Authority as a Voluntary Aided School. The school's Governing Body is the Admissions Authority and is responsible for taking decisions on applications for admissions. For the school year commencing September 2017, the Governing Body has set its planned admissions number at 60.

If a child has a Statement of Special Educational Needs and this school is named on the Statement, a place must be offered.


Admissions to the school will be made by the governing body in accordance with the stated parental preferences it receives, subject to the following set of criteria which will be used to form a priority order if there are more applications for admission then the school has places.



Baptised Roman Catholic children in public care (Looked After Children) and previously looked after children. Previously looked after children are children who were looked after, but ceased to be so because they were adopted[1] (or became subject to a residence order[2] or special guardianship order.


Baptised Roman Catholic children who will have a brother or sister attending the school at the time of admission.


Other Baptised Roman Catholic children who are resident in the parish of St Mary’s.


Other Baptised Roman Catholic children resident in another parish.


Other children (Non-Roman Catholic) who are in public care (Looked After Children) and previously looked after children. Previously looked after children are children who were looked after, but ceased to be so because they were adopted[1] (or became subject to a residence order[2] or special guardianship order.


Other children with exceptional needs.


Other children (Non-Roman Catholic children) who have siblings in the school.


Other children (Non-Roman Catholic) who are resident in the Parish of St Mary’s.


Other children.

Supplementary Form:

Parents who wish to seek priority under any criterion that requires additional evidence should complete the school’s Supplementary Form (SIF) and return it to the school with baptism and birth certificates attached. (If you do not complete the supplementary form, your child will not be considered under the faith criteria). Short birth certificates will be checked if a place is offered. The form is available from the school and must be returned to the school by the specified date on the form.


(a) All applicants will be considered at the same time and after the closing date for admissions.

(b) Each Roman Catholic applicant will be required to produce a baptismal certificate and proof of residence.

(c) Parents/applicants should check carefully whether they are resident within the parish boundary of St Mary’s. Please consult school for verification.

(d) It is the duty of the Governors to comply with class size limits at Key Stage 1 and Foundation Stage (Reception). This means that the school cannot operate classes in Key Stage 1 or Foundation Stage of more than 30 children.

(e) If in any category there are more applications than places available, priority will be given on the basis of proximity and this will be determined by a straight line distance, as provided by the Local Authority. Those living closer to school will receive the higher priority.

(f) The Governing Body will consider children with proven and exceptional medical and social needs where admission to the school might best help satisfy those exceptional needs, providing that such an application is submitted with appropriate evidence from a doctor or social worker. Parents should explain why St Mary’s RC is more suitable than any other school and what difficulties would be caused if the child had to attend a different school.

(g) Admission to the Reception Class is separate to those for the Nursery. Attendance at the Nursery does not give any child any guarantee or priority when it comes to consideration by the Governors of applicants for admission to the Reception Class.

(h) In cases of shared parenting, the home address will be taken as the address of the parent to whom Child Benefit is paid.

(i) For the purpose of this policy the Governing Body will define ‘Sibling Link’ as a brother and sister or step-brother and sister residing at the same address as well as foster children and children of partners living in the same house.

(j) If there is a situation where only one place is available and the next children to be offered are twins or triplets, both twins or all three triplets will be offered places.

(k) Applications received after the closing date will be treated as ‘late’ applications. Parents will be expected to provide a reason/s for the late application. If this is not exceptional the application will be dealt with after all others have been dealt with. Late applications will be considered in accordance with the published admissions criteria. They will be placed on a reserve list in priority order according to the published admissions criteria. Parents will be notified if a vacancy subsequently arises.

(l) The school will hold a waiting list for the first term after the normal admission round, September to December. If places become available, they will be offered in accordance with the School’s Admission Criteria.

(m) Parents of children who are admitted to the school before they are of compulsory school age can defer their child’s entry until later in the school year. Where entry is deferred, the school will hold a place for that child and not offer it to another child. A parent cannot defer entry beyond the beginning of the term after the child’s fifth birthday, nor the academic year for which the original application was accepted. Parents can also request that their child attends on a part time basis until the child reaches compulsory school age.

(n) If any application for admission has been turned down by the Governing Body, parents can appeal to an Independent Appeals Panel. This appeal must be sent in writing to the Clerk to the Governors at the school within 14 days of notification of refusal. The date of notification will be two working days after posting by first class post. The parents must give their reasons for appealing, in writing, and the decision of the Appeals Panel is binding on the Governors.

Further details are available on the Bury L.A. website on:


Nursery Intake

The criteria for admission to the school equally applies to the Nursery. However the allocation of full time (where possible) morning and afternoon places, will be completed on a first come first serve basis.


Appeals Procedure

Parents of Pupils who have not been allocated a place at the school, have recourse to the appeals procedure. Appeals should be addressed to:

The Secretary,
Appeals Panel,
Roman Catholic Schools,
Education Department,
Athenaeum House,
Market Street,

Further details are available on the Bury L.A. website on:

Visiting School

Parents considering registering their children may visit the school at any time, by prior arrangement with the Head Teacher Before the beginning of the school year, a meeting for parents of those children who are already registered will be held, when Baptismal details will be required and school routines and practices explained to them.

As this is a Roman Catholic School, it is conducted in accordance with the rites, practices and observances of the Roman Catholic Faith and it is expected that children admitted to the school will take full and active part in the religious life of the school.

Parents who wish to withdraw their children from religious instruction and worship, must make arrangements with the School's Governing Body before the child is admitted.

Admission form (click here) - for completion during the school year ( not for September intake)


Information about class set-up


Local Authority

Applying for FS1/Nursery

Applying for FS2/ReceptionApplying for FS2/Reception