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Nursery Admissions


At Tithe Farm we have a thriving Nursery unit attached to our school.  All children, subject to the availability of places, will normally be admitted to the nursery class at the start of term after their third birthday i.e. at the start of term in September, January or after the Easter break.

Provided we have spaces we generally accept children into our Nursery class the term after their third Birthday.  Intakes are in September, January and at Easter each year.  Where possible we are happy to accept those children whose parents are eligible for 30 funded hours and also funded 2 year old children. As long as there is space, funded 2 year old places will be allocated the term after the are two and a half.

In this school we offer the following patterns of provision:

Universal entitlement

  • 5 mornings a week
  • 5 afternoons a week
  • Full day for funded children eligible for 30 hours (See information below for further details)

(Sessions are allocated based on their age).

Extended entitlement

  • 8:45am until 3:30pm Mon-Fri

If your child is attending for 30 hours then a fee of £5.00 is payable per day and this is paid through ParentPay.  You will need to provide a packed lunch or book a school dinner through Chartwells. Please see the school website for details about Chartwells.

Admission criteria

However, we may need to delay your child’s start beyond the relevant term in circumstances where the school has induction procedures to follow to enable your child to be successfully integrated with others and get used to school life.  This is decided in consultation with the Head Teacher and Nursery Leader. Your child may not receive their full free entitlement in these circumstances.

Oversubscription Criteria

If there are not enough places available for all applicants, we will apply the criteria which are ranked in priority order below.

  • The children who will become four years of age during the 2021/2022 academic year and would only have the opportunity to benefit from three terms of nursery education.

The allocation of places within this group of children will then be based on priorities 1 to 6 listed below.

If there are not enough applicants within this older group of children above to fill all available places, then we will next consider those younger children who will reach the age of three during the academic year 2022/2023.

Priority will then be given to these children who will become three during the autumn term, then the spring term and then the summer term. Within each term the allocation of places is based on priorities 1 to 6 listed below. 

Places can only be offered to these younger children if we can confirm that a place is not needed for a child who will become four years of age during the 2022/2023 academic year.

We will give priority in the following order:

  1. Looked After Children (children in public care and as deemed under Section 22 of the Children Act 1989).
  2. Children who will access either their full universal entitlement or full extended entitlement within this nursery.
  3. Children who live in Houghton Regis and have a brother and sister at the school.
  4. Children who live in the catchment area.
  5. Children who have exceptional medical or social grounds. (See point a below).
  6. Children who live outside Houghton Regis, but only if places are otherwise likely to remain available during the academic year.

Tie Breaker

If within any of the above priorities, there are more applicants than places available then priority will be given to those children based on the distance they live from the school measured as the crow flies i.e. in a straight line from the centre of the home residence to the main entrance of the school. Children living nearest the school will have priority.


For the purposes of deciding whether a child lives in the catchment area of a school we will use the parent or legal guardian’s address or the address of a relevant adult who has parental responsibility (as defined under the 1989 Children Act) for the child. 

Change in circumstances

If a child becomes eligible for the extended entitlement at any point after the closing date for applications, subject to availability, a place will be available, from the start of the week following their confirmation of eligibility. If no place is available, the child will be placed on the waiting list.

If a child loses their eligibility at any point after the allocation of places, parents/ carers and headteacher will agree the pattern of attendance for the universal entitlement. In the case of 30 hours, if the funding ceases then the parent/carer will be invoiced for the outstanding balance.

Waiting list

If places, then become available we will consider all the applications on a waiting list. The waiting list will be maintained by the Nursery Leader from the start of the academic year and be kept for the rest of the academic year. All applicants on the waiting list will be placed according to the admission criteria and priorities set out above. The length of time a child has been on the waiting list cannot be taken into account if places become available. If you apply late, your child's name may be added to the list by using the priority order described above.


If you feel that the admissions criteria stated above have not been fairly applied to your child, then you may register a complaint with the Governing Body using their normal complaints procedure.

Admission into Reception

Obtaining a place in our school nursery class does not guarantee your child a place in our school for entry to Reception class.  There are different admission criteria that applies for admission to infant and primary school entry.  You must apply again before January 15th for admission to an infant or primary school. This application must be made through Central Bedfordshire Council - School admissions.


This policy will be reviewed annually by the Governing Body