MORE parents than ever are applying for school places online since a new system was installed prior to the current academic year.
Since the start of 2013/14, applications via this method has shot up by 80 per cent, according to a report presented to Sunderland City Council’s cabinet yesterday.
Councillor Pat Smith, the authority’s portfolio holder for children and learning, said that council facilities providing help to use the new system had led to more parents using it.
“Applications to primary and secondary schools continue to be made through paper, but now we have this online method,” she said at the meeting at Sunderland Civic Centre.
“The benefit of this system is that we have seen a 80 per cent rise in online applications for secondary places with a similar increase for primary level places.”
Cabinet has now approved changes to the admissions criteria, making it easier for parents applying for a place in infant school, if they have another child in the junior school for which it is a feeder.
The council has received 127 letters in support of the move from parents of children at Hill View Infant and Junior schools.