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Starting secondary school: information for parents

​Parents' transition open evenings

Pupils transfer to secondary schools at the end of primary school (Year 6). Throughout Year 6, transition tutors from secondary schools visit primary schools in their catchment area. You will be invited to an open evening at your child's new secondary school, to learn more about the curriculum and courses and collect your 'Transition Packs'. 

Contact your school for dates and further information.

Secondary school induction

In July all Year 6 pupils have the opportunity to spend two days in their prospective secondary school before they transfer. This gives children the opportunity to experience their new schools and to meet their new teachers and other pupils.

The differences between primary and secondary 

The main differences for children attending primary school and secondary school are:

  • size of the building and finding their way around
  • the number of students on site
  • the range of different subjects and teachers
  • moving classrooms between each lesson
  • increased levels of homework
  • travelling further to / from school and possibly using the school bus system for the first time

How you can help

There are many ways to support your child. You can:

  • attend all school parents evenings
  • ensure your child always arrives at school on time
  • check that your child has all the stationery, uniform, books and equipment that they need
  • help them to plan their homework
  • contact their school if concerns arise at home
  • keep the school up-to-date with any change in contact details

Apply for a place at a non-fee paying secondary school


You will automatically be offered a place at your catchment secondary school if your child is at a States' primary school (unless they are going to a fee-paying secondary school).

The offer letter will be sent to you at the end of January when your child is in year 6. You can request a place at a different secondary school by completing the out of catchment request online form.

If schools are full then priority is given to students who:​

  1. have a special educational need and must attend a specific school
  2. live in the school catchment area
  3. have a brother or sister in years 7 to 10
  4. attend a primary school in the secondary school catchment area
  5. have parents who live or work in the school catchment area
  6. have a brother or sister in Year 11
  7. have a good educational reason for attending a non-catchment school
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