Schools and cornavirus

Schools, childcare and other educational provisions are closed to everyone following the outbreak of coronavirus, except for:

Children of key (critical) workers

- Vulnerable children - this includes children with a social worker, an EHCP and those with safeguarding concerns


These schools will remain open for these children. They will be prioritised for early years and education provision. We are working with schools to provide support at this time, including for families who rely on free school meals for their children.

Primary school admissions

Reception school admissions: starting reception in 2020/21

Pupils usually start primary school in the September following their fourth birthday. If your child was born between 1 September 2015 and 31 August 2016 this will be from September 2020. You must Make an online application for a reception place, even if your child is already attending the school's nursery.

You must apply via the e-admissions portal. Closing date for making applications is 15 January 2020.

Contact Numbers:

Keisha Rose - 020 7364 3837

Kia Wahr - 020 7364 4412

Sakib Rahman - 020 7364 4419

Before you apply

The Starting Primary School in Tower Hamlets brochure is available online and contains all the  information you need on applying for your child's reception place. You can also get a copy from nurseries and primary schools in Tower Hamlets or by contacting the Pupil Services team. For more information on catchment areas and the tie-break criterion please see our 'Equal Chance' page.

How to apply

You must apply online, please visit the eadmissions portal. You can apply online from 1 September 2019 and until 15 January 2020. Applying online for your child's reception place is a simple process and you can easily make changes to your application up until the closing date. 

We have arranged sessions at the borough's Idea Stores to help you make your application if you require support. If you do not have access to the internet at home, you can attend the Idea Stores at any time and use their internet services for free.

Idea Store Bow

1 Gladstone Place

Roman Road

E3 5ES

The Shadwell Centre

455 The Highway


Idea Store  Chrisp   Street

1 Vesey Path

East India Dock Road

E14 6BT

Idea Store  Whitechapel

Whitechapel Road

E1 1BU

Friday 13th September

9am – 4pm

Thursday 26th September

9am - 4pm

Monday 16th September

9am – 4pm

Friday 20th September

9am – 4pm

Friday 11th  October

9am – 4pm

Thursday 3rd October

9am – 4 pm

Monday 14th  October

9am – 4pm

Friday 25th October

9am – 4pm

Friday 29th November

9am – 4pm

Friday 13th December 

9am - 4pm

Monday 11th November

9am - 4pm

Friday 15th  November

9am –  4pm

Tuesday 21st January

9am – 4pm

Friday 24th January

9am –  4 pm

Monday 16th December

9am - 4pm

Friday 6th December

9am – 4pm

Tuesday 4th February

9am – 4pm


Monday 13th  January

9am - 4pm

Friday 10th January    

9am – 4pm



Monday 17th February

9am - 4pm 

Friday 7th February    

9am – 4pm  




Friday 14th February  

9am – 4pm     

National offer day

All parents that applied for a Reception school place before 15 January 2020 will be sent a letter with the outcome of their application on 16 April. Parents will also be able to view the outcome of their application on the evening of 16 April by visiting the eadmissions portal.

Parents will receive an email to inform them when the information is available to view on the website.

Deferring school entry

All children are expected to start school in the reception year in September, if they will be five in that school year. Deferring school entry means that a child begins school later than September, but still joins their own age-peer group. Please call Pupil Services on 020 7364 5006 and a form can be sent to you.


If your child is not offered a place at a school of your preference you can appeal against that decision. The appeal panel is independent of the council and schools in the borough.

Infant class size legislation applies to appeals for children starting reception. This means that a class must not contain more than 30 pupils with a single school teacher. Parents should note that there are only very limited circumstances where reception appeals are successful.

If you wish to appeal you can download an admission appeals form or call Pupil Services. Please include any evidence or supporting material with your appeal form and you must give the grounds for your appeal at the time the appeal is lodged. You may appeal for more than one school.

For your appeal to be heard in June 2020, you will need to submit your appeal form by 15 May 2020. Appeals received after this date will result in a delay to your appeal being heard. Please read the appeal timetable 2020 for more information.

Need a school place today?

If your child is of nursery, primary or secondary school age now and does not have a school place, please contact Pupil Services or visit our in-year admissions page.

Further information