Education for children of refugees and asylum seekers

Welcome to the UK, and welcome to Birmingham.

If you live in England, you must ensure that any of your children aged between 5 and 16 are in full-time education.

Your child is entitled to a place at a state-funded school in England. There are no costs or charges related to a child's admission to a state-funded school.

You can read further information on our website regarding school admissions.

Primary school

Children can attend primary school full-time in September after their fourth birthday. However, your child can attend primary school part-time until the start of the term immediately after your child turns 5.

Alternatively, you can keep your child at home or in Nursery Year while they are 4 and apply for your child to start primary school from the start of the term following their fifth birthday, although schools may have more limited places.

Applications need to be made by 15 January of the year that the child is due to start Reception Year. For example, for children due to start Reception in September 2023, applications need to be submitted by 15 January 2023.

It is a parent's or carer's responsibility and legal obligation to ensure that they apply for a school place for their child, so their child receives education by their fifth birthday.

Secondary school

Children transfer to secondary school when they are 11.

Applications need to be made by 31 October before the year they are due to transfer. For example, for children due to transfer to secondary school in September 2023, applications need to be submitted by 31 October 2022.

In-year admissions

If you have just arrived in Birmingham and your child is aged 5 or over, you will need to apply for an in-year admission to a school.

You will need to submit an in-year application directly to a Birmingham school. An application form is available on our website.

Application forms

Make sure that when you complete an application for your child to attend school, you include details of your previous address in your country of origin, such as Afghanistan or Ukraine.

There is a section on the application form for in-year school admissions to include this information.

If you are applying for your child to start Reception Year or transfer to a secondary school for September, you must include your previous address on the online application form in the reasons for preferences section.

Page last updated: 11 March 2024

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