School Admissions Ireland
The Education Act (Admission to Schools Act 2018) introduced new rules regarding admission to primary and secondary schools in Ireland. As a result of this new legislation, all school boards must publish an annual notice of admission before accepting any application for a given year.
Schools must admit students based on their admission policy and admission notice. The notice of admission must tell you:
Schools can no longer use the time and date they receive an application as the basis for admission. This means that applications cannot be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and that schools must phase out existing waiting lists by January 31, 2025. If a school is not oversubscribed, the school must continue to accept all applicants even after this time period has expired. Schools can also no longer charge fees or ask for contributions as a condition of admission with the exception of fee-paying high schools, boarding schools, and PLC courses.
Schools will typically open their application process for the next school year during October of the previous year. Dates may vary at some schools, but the school’s admissions policy will define school dates.
In general, schools must accept all students who apply unless they get more applications than there are places (see exceptions below). The school’s admissions policy will set out the rules that will apply if the school is oversubscribed, which students to accept, and in what order.