School Admissions Consultation 2025 – 2026

The County Council is responsible for setting a Published Admission Number (PAN) for all community and voluntary-controlled schools and must consult on any proposals to reduce PANs. After a period of demographic growth, the demand for primary places across the county has fallen and, in some areas, fewer school places are needed. This is in line with a decrease in primary demand across most other local authorities. Changes in demand are not evenly distributed and some areas and schools are impacted more than others. As part of the PAN setting process for academic year 2025/26, the County Council has engaged with headteachers and governing bodies at a number of schools, including Northfields Infants and Nursery School, to discuss and agree a proposed PAN reduction.

A reduction of the PAN at Northfields Infants and Nursery School from 60 to 30 places from 2025/26 is proposed following a drop in the number of applications and allocations for September 2023. The pupil forecast indicates lower demand for Reception places across this part of Ashwell, Baldock & Letchworth Garden City areas plus Edworth for 2025/26 and beyond. A reduction in PAN would create a better match of places to expected demand, protecting the financial viability of the school moving forward. The Governing Body and Headteacher are both in agreement with the proposal which will assist the school both organisationally and financially.

UPDATE (Feb 2024) – The admissions proposed amendments for 2025/26 have been agreed by Cabinet.