Pre-school Admissions Guide

Although pre-school isn't compulsory it has benefits. Our guide will help you understand more about the process and what to expect when applying for a place in pre-school for your child.

Key Dates

Apply Between

12 noon Tuesday 7 January 2020 (GMT)       
12 noon Thursday 30 January 2020 (GMT)

Your application will be treated as punctual within this timeframe.

 After 12noon Thursday 30 January 2020

After this date/time:-

  • the online portal will not be accessible to apply;
  • all applications are paper-based and a paper application is available in your local pre-school or from the Education Authority.
  • Applications received for a Target Age child will now be late (Stage 1) and for an Underage child treated as late throughout the procedure.

By 12 noon Friday 7 February 2020 (GMT)

Final date/time you can provide to your first preference pre-school a new application (treated as late) and additional information in support of an application for any preference(s) listed. 

Final date/time a parent can submit a Change of Preference in Exceptional Circumstances (CoPEC) request to the Education Authority.  Read the pre-school guidance for further information.  CoPEC requests will not be accepted after this date/time.

 28 April 2020 (Close of Stage 1)

Letters will be posted on this date for receipt on 29 April 2020 to advise on the outcome of your application (Target Age Only).

29 April 2020 (Stage 2 commences)

New Stage 2 first time applications

5 May 2020 (no later than 4pm)

Receipt of:-

  • a). Further Preferences for unplaced Stage 1 target age child (treated as punctual);
  • b). New first time Stage 2 target age application/documents (treated as punctual); Received after 4pm on 5 May treated as late.
  • c). New preference (treated as late) for target age child who was offered a funded place at Stage 1–Parent wanting to refuse offer;
  • d). New first time Stage 2 underage application/documents (treated as late).

New additional documents for an underage punctual application (treated as punctual).

5 May 2020 is the final date (a) to (d) inclusive will be accepted and processed in accordance with this timetable.  If received after this date it will not be considered by the pre-school provider until after the close of Stage 2.

NOTE:   In all cases additional funded places will not be granted to a provider for a child who has already been offered a funded place in another setting.

13 May 2020 (no later than 4pm)

EA will accept appeal form for Stage 1 against Nursery School/Units

8 June 2020 (Close of Stage 2)

Letters will be posted for receipt on 9 June 2020 to advise on the outcome of your application.

22 June 2020 (no later than 4pm)

EA will accept appeal form for Stage 2 against Nursery School/Units

Admissions Helpdesk

If additional information is required or any difficulty is experienced, parents can contact the admissions helpdesk via the email addresses below:

Monday - Friday 9am - 5pm

Last updated: 28/04/2020