NEARLY 89 per cent of St Helens children will be going to their parents' preferred choice of primary school in September, according to figures.

St Helens Council data shows1,842 school starters secured their top preference, while 228 children got second, third or alternative choice.

Parents were informed of the news on offer day, which is April 18, with 96.97 per cent receiving one of their three choices.

Figures show 88.99 per cent per cent received their first choice pick, which is slightly down on last year.

Cllr Andy Bowden, St Helens Council's cabinet member for children, families, young people and education, said: “Our School Admissions Team and primary schools have all worked exceptionally hard to ensure that the overwhelming majority of St Helens parents – 96.97 per cent – have been allocated one of their preferred primary schools for September 2017.

“If any parent or guardian has a concern about the outcome of their application for a school place, or if their child will be four-years-old before September 1, 2017, and have not yet applied – I would ask them to contact the School Admissions Team on 01744 671035/1029.”

Below are this year’s results in comparison with those in 2016.

Total number of applications in 2017 – 2,070 vs 2,080 in 2016

Number of online applications – 1,659 (80.14 per cent) vs 1,671 (80.34 per cent) in 2016.

First preference offers – 1,842 (88.99 per cent) vs 1,865 (89.66 per cent) in 2016.

Second preference offers – 127 (6.14 per cent) vs 126 (6.06) per cent in 2016

Third preference offers – 38 (1.84 per cent) vs 37 (1.78 per cent) in 2016

Alternative offers – 63 (3.03 per cent) vs 52 (2.5 per cent) in 2016.

There are currently 225 vacant places at primary schools in the borough.

These are at:

- Blackbrook St Mary’s

- Broad Oak

- Chapel End

- Corpus Christi

- Grange Valley

- Holy Cross

- Holy Spirit

- Longton Lane

- Newton

- Queens Park C.E./U.R.C.

- Rainford Brook Lodge

- Rainford C.E.

- Rectory C.E.

- Sherdley

- St Aidan’s C.E.

- St Anne’s (Sutton)

- St Bartholomew’s

- St James’

- St John Vianney

- St Julie’s

- Sutton Manor

- Sutton Oak C.E

- Thatto Heath

- The District C.E

- Wargrave C.E

- Willow Tree.