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Admission Criteria

All applications will be considered without reference to the order in which the school is expressed as a preference. Children with a Statement of Special Needs (SEN) or Education, Health and Care Plan that names the preferred school will be offered places first.

The Council will admit up to 300 pupils. If the school is over-subscribed, the following criteria will be applied to all applications in priority order.

Children in public care

Children in Public Care (Looked After Children) who are the subject of a full care order, including adopted children who were previously in care and children who leave care under a special guardianship or residence order. A looked after child is a child who is (a) in the care of a local authority or (b) being provided with accommodation by a local authority in the exercise of their social services functions (see definition in Section 22(1) of the Children Act 1989).

Vulnerable children

Other children who are considered as "vulnerable" whose application for the preferred school is supported by the Assistant Director for Social Care. This will include:

  • Children for whom there is a child protection plan or has been within a 12 month period
  • Children who have had a period in care within two years of the admission application and are still receiving social care services
  • Children who are considered to be at significant risk of becoming looked after
  • Children who are living in temporary accommodation due to fleeing violence/rehousing

Children with older siblings 

Children who will have older siblings in years 7 to 11 of the preferred school time of application and admission date. Siblings can include full, step, half, foster and adopted brothers and sisters living at the same address.

Local parish precept

Pupils who reside at an address that pays a "local parish precept" to Blackrod or Horwich Town Councils, unless at any time that number exceeds the published admission number, in which case pupils will be offered places based on distance from school as determined in priority 7.

Children with a medical condition or disability

Children who suffer from some medical condition or disability, which makes it better for them to attend that school rather than another. Places will only be offered under this criterion if the child has a certified medical condition with strong professional supporting evidence confirming that existing exceptional problems with the child's health would be seriously exacerbated if a place was not made at the preferred school.

Parents applying under this criteria must provide a letter from the child's GP/Consultant setting out why the school is the most suitable school and details of the child's medical condition. Medical evidence must be submitted prior to the closing date for applications. Evidence received after the closing date will not be taken into consideration.

Remaining places

Any remaining places not distributed under priorities 1 to 5, the school will admit 20% based on the commitment to the Christian faith. Parents must complete the school supplementary form as evidence that the family and the child are active worshipping members at a Christian church. Active worshipping members will be those persons who worship at least once a month sustained over a period of the year prior to the closing date for applications.

The supplementary form is available from the Bolton Council website. Alternatively, you can call them direct on 01204 332 137.

In the event that during the period specified for attendance at worship, the church has been closed for public worship and has not provided alternative premises for that worship, the requirements of these arrangements in relation to attendance will only apply to the period when the church or alternative premises have been available for public worship.

Shortest walking distance to the preferred school minus shortest walking distance to the nearest/next nearest school plus 100 to create a ranking value. The lower the ranking value, the higher the priority for a place. The nearest/next nearest school will include all community, voluntary-controlled, foundation free and academy schools whether in the Bolton Borough or not.

  • If any categories are oversubscribed, geographical proximity (as set out in category seven above) will be used as a tie-breaker. If the proximity value is equal, then random allocation will be used as a tie-breaker. This will be carried out by an officer of Bolton Council independent to the school admission team.
  • The remaining places will be offered to children who live nearest to the school. The distance will be measured in a straight line between the home address point and the school's designated main entrance. In the event of a tie break within a block of flats, those living furthest from the communal entrance will be given a priority.
  • Where a single place remains at a school and the application being considered is for twins (etc.), the Council will allocate above the admission number to accommodate each child.

Why should I choose RBHS?

Situated in an environment of extensive natural beauty, the school has over 450 years of history, and in recent years, the school has undergone a significant transformation. We have considerably invested in renovating the buildings, corridors and classrooms; creating new spaces for students to learn and enjoy. More importantly, it has transformed what happens in the classroom, putting students’ learning and pastoral care at the heart of the school.

In addition to providing excellent exam results, there is a real focus on developing the whole child; ensuring that students leave with the skills needed to succeed in their careers and play an active role in their communities.

We offer an extensive extra-curricular provision to encourage students to excel in arts and sports and opportunities to develop students’ leadership skills.

View extra curricular timetable > 

How to apply 

If you’d like to apply for a place at Rivington & Blackrod High School, you must indicate your preference on the Local Authority application form. To apply online, click here >

Alternatively, if you need free, independent, and impartial support to help you with the admissions process, please contact the Admissions Team on 01204 332 137.

Who to contact

If you have any questions or queries relating to admissions, please contact our Admissions Team via email at admissions@rbhs.co.uk.