Admissions policy

The Admissions Policy for academic year (2020/21) is shown below. For Admissions Policies for other years, please see About Us/Statutory Information/Policies.

We encourage applicants from non-linked schools and those who live out of our local area to apply; in the last twelve years all on time applicants who prioritised us have secured a place at The Cowplain School.

As an Academy School we set our own Admissions Policy.  If we are full in any year, we use siblings, our linked schools and distance from the school as our key criteria to determine places.  As we do not have a catchment area it is much easier for families who live in our community to secure a place.

The guiding principles of the school admissions policy are that each school should serve its local community; that siblings as far as possible can attend school together; and that children can benefit from continuity between schools serving the same community.  The policy aims to be clear, fair and objective and complies with all relevant legislation.

Admission Criteria

The published admissions number for the academic year 2020/2021 is 216. Six of these places are given to Hampshire County Council to place students in our Dyslexia Unit.

Admission Criteria that all schools use in the event of over-subscription – in priority order:

The Cowplain School’s admission criteria are:

1. Looked after children or children who were previously looked after but immediately after being looked after became subject to an adoption, child arrangement order, or special guardianship order.

2. (For applicants in the normal admission round only) Children or parents with an exceptional medical and social need.  Evidence must be provided from a medical specialist or social worker, of the child or parent’s need and why those needs make it essential that the child attends this school rather than any other.  If evidence is not submitted by the application deadline, the medical or social needs cannot be considered.

3. Brothers/sisters of children who are attending the School (including children living as siblings in the same family unit) and will still be on roll at The Cowplain School at the time of the sibling’s admission.

4. Children of staff who have been employed at the school for two or more years at the time of at which the application for admission to the school is made, or have been recruited to fill a vacant post for which there is a demonstrable skill shortage.

5. Attendance at one of our linked schools:  Denmead Junior, Hart Plain Junior, Hambledon Primary, Padnell Junior or Woodcroft Primary School. 

6. Distance from the school based on a straight line from the School Reception front door to the front door of the property.  For students from the villages of Denmead and Hambledon, distance will be measured from the front door of the property to either Doctors Surgery Bus Stop on Hambledon Road, Denmead or West Street Bus Stop, Hambledon, whichever is the nearer. 

If the school is oversubscribed from within any of the above categories, straight line distance will be used to prioritise applications; applicants living nearer the school have priority. Distances to multiple dwellings will give priority to the ground floor over the first floor and so on. On individual floors, distances will be measured to the stairs leading to the communal entrance.  If it still not possible to decide between two applicants who are equidistant than a random allocation will be made to allocate the final place.  An explanation of the method of making random allocations is on the council website. 


If you wish to seek admission for your child at The Cowplain School, would you kindly:

Apply online or using paper form available from the school office, no later than midnight on Monday 31 October 2019.   Applications made after midnight 31 October 2019 will be considered after all on-time applications have been fully processed unless exceptional circumstances merit consideration alongside on-time applications.  Entry decisions will be based on The Cowplain School’s Admission Criteria.  On 1 March 2020 Hampshire Admissions Team will inform parents by email, if application was made online or by letter if a paper application was submitted, of the school place their child has secured.

  1. All preferences will be considered at the time and ranked in accordance with the admission criteria.
  1. Names of late and unsuccessful applicants will be placed on a “Waiting List”, if requested, and parents will be informed if and when a place becomes available. The “Waiting List” will be reviewed and revised:
  • When a child’s changed circumstances will affect their priority
  • Each time a child is added to, or removed from the “Waiting List”
  • In September 2020 parents of children who are on the “Waiting List” will be contacted and asked if they wish to remain on the list for the current academic year

Please note:

  • Parents must note the Aims of the school and the Rewards and Sanctions Policy, as we will assume that application to join the school demonstrates acceptance of these polices.


Pupils with an EHCP

Any child whose Education and Health Care Plan names The Cowplain School will be admitted.  Where possible such children will be admitted within the PAN. 


Parents seeking admission for their children, who do not secure a place, have the right to appeal to an Independent Appeals Panel.  Details of the procedure will be sent on receipt of written request appeal.

Multiple births

Where a twin or child from a multiple birth is admitted to a school under this policy then any further twin or child of the same multiple birth will be admitted, if the parents so wish, even though this may raise the intake number above the school’s PAN.  No other pupil will be admitted until a place becomes available within the PAN.

In-year fair access placements by the local authority

The local authority must ensure that all pupils are placed in schools as quickly as possible.  It may therefore sometimes be necessary for a pupil to be placed by the local authority, or a local placement panel acting on behalf of the authority, in a particular school even if there is a waiting list for admission.  Such placements will be made in accordance with the provisions of the local authority’s In-Year Access protocol.  The Protocol is based on legislation and government guidance.  If an admission under the Protocol raises the number on roll above the PAN, no further pupil will be admitted until a place becomes available with the PAN.

Other information

The school prospectus giving information about the school and details of Admissions Procedures will be published in September.  Parents are encouraged to visit and view the school with their daughters/sons on the school’s Open Evening or by appointment at other times.

Arrangements for admission are determined by the Governing Body, which is the accredited admission authority for the school.

Admission of children outside their normal age group

Parents can seek outside their normal age group. To do so, parents should include a request with their application, specifying why admission outside the normal age group is being requested and which year group they wish their child to be admitted. Decisions will be made based on the circumstances of the case and in the best interests of the child.


The policy takes account of all Equalities legislation, together with all relevant regulations and the School Admissions Code (published by the DfE 2014).

Linked schools

The following schools are linked:

Denmead Junior School

Hambledon Primary School

Hart Plain Junior School

Padnell Junior School

Woodcroft Primary School