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First Form (Year 7)


The School was founded by The Congregation of the Oratory of Saint Philip Neri (London) and the Fathers of this Congregation are the trustees of the School. The London Oratory School and The Brompton Oratory have always maintained a close working relationship which includes the Oratory Fathers supplying chaplaincy to the School and the School supplying the Schola choir for the parish.

The School’s aim is to assist Catholic parents from across London in fulfilling their obligation to educate  their children in accordance with the principles and teachings of the Church, to provide a unique liturgical life founded in the spiritual and musical traditions of the oratories of St Philip Neri and of the London Oratory Church; to do this within an environment which will encourage and support the spiritual, physical, moral and intellectual development of the child and help them to grow towards full Christian maturity; and to provide a wide and rich range of educational and cultural experiences which will encourage children to discover and develop their potential to its maximum and to strive for high standards of excellence in all activities.


In these arrangements, “parent” means the parent or parents, or guardian, of the child (candidate) for whom a place at The London Oratory School is being sought. Where parent(s) is used it refers to one parent if the child resides with only one parent or to the guardian of the candidate, or to both parents if the child resides with both.


Parents are encouraged, accompanied if possible by their son, to attend one of the meetings for parents of prospective pupils, where the Headmaster and his staff will explain the nature of the School, the demands it makes of both pupils and their parents and the commitment which they make when they accept a place at the School. These meetings do not play a part in the admission decision-making process and attendance is not a condition for allocation of a place. The dates of meetings for parents and prospective Junior House pupils are:

Wednesday, 18th October 2017 at 6.00pm Thursday, 16th November 2017 at 2.00pm

For further details of these meetings and other enquiries please contact the School’s Registrar.


You should submit, to this school, our Supplementary Information Form and Music Inquiry Form by Friday 12th January 2018. Parents will be informed of the outcome by the third week in February 2018.

Applications received after the applicable closing date given in these arrangements will only be considered in exceptional circumstances, for example, when a family has just moved from abroad. Separate provision is made for candidates with a Statement of Special Educational Needs/Education Health and Care Plan.

If an application for a place is unsuccessful, parents will be given an opportunity to appeal against the decision to an appeal panel set up in accordance with the statutory provisions in force at the time.

There were 52 applications for the 20 places in Junior House in September 2017.


Twenty boys will be admitted to the Junior House at the age of seven for a specialist musical education. In determining to which candidates places will be offered, priority will always be given to Catholics (defined as a baptised person in full communion with the See of Rome). Of the twenty places, up to ten are to be offered to choristers. Boys in the Junior House are full members of the School and are expected to remain at the School until the end of their secondary phase of education.

In the first instance only candidates falling under Category A and B will be considered. If there are insufficient candidates in these categories then category C, followed by Category D children will be considered.

Candidates will be tested for general ability. Those candidates whose ability test score indicates average or above average ability will then be considered in relation to suitability for a specialist music course as assessed in the musical audition, to determine to whom places will be offered.

The music audition will involve candidates being tested aurally and orally for general musical aptitude and potential, and, in the case of candidates applying to be a chorister, for choral aptitude and suitability as a chorister. The purpose of the audition is to assess the candidate’s musical potential and suitability for a specialist musical education at the School. A candidate whose application for a place as a chorister is unsuccessful, may still be considered for a place as a non-chorister.

In the event of over subscription, the arrangements set out below will be used to determine the boys to whom the places will be offered.


After the admission of boys with a Statement of Special Educational Needs/Education Health and Care Plan which names the School, places will be allocated according to the criteria below

The over-subscription criteria below will be applied in order of Category.

Within Category B each application is assessed against each criterion in turn. The table below shows how this operates (x indicates that the criterion has been met). Where necessary a random allocation tie break is used to separate candidates at each point where more than one candidate falls at the same position.

Order for ranking





First candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





Next candidates





and so on

Category A

Catholic looked after boys and Catholic boys who have been adopted (or made subject to residence/child arrangements orders or special guardianship orders) immediately following having been looked after.

Category B

Catholic children from practising Catholic families

Parents will be required to provide validated evidence that the child and at least one of his parents are Catholic. The priest’s reference form will be used to verify that the Catholic parent(s) and their son practise their faith.

  1. Candidate and his Catholic parent (where the child resides with only one parent, or where the child resides with both parents but only one is Catholic) or parents (where the child resides with both parents and both are Catholic) who meet their obligations in respect of Mass attendance on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation and have done so for the past three years. This obligation is laid out in Canon Law, canons 1246, 1247, 1248 (copies of which are reproduced at the end of this document). Mass attendance must be verified by priest’s reference.
  2. Candidates who received Baptism up to six months after birth, unless there is good reason which has been endorsed by your parish priest. (Where a child has been adopted the calculation is made from date of Adoption Order.)
  3. Candidates who have a brother or sister at the School on the date of admission to the School. A brother or sister is defined as brother or sister of whole or half blood, or an adopted brother or sister who permanently resides at the same address.
  4. Candidate who are a sibling of a former pupil. Sibling of a former pupil is defined as a brother or sister of whole or half-blood, or an adopted brother or sister, of a former pupil who completed at least one full year of education at the school.

Category C

Other Catholic children

Category D

Non Catholic children

If any places remain after the applications have been considered under Categories A to C places will be allocated to non-Catholic applicants in the following order:

  1. Other looked after children and children who have been adopted (or made subject to residence orders/child arrangement orders or special guardianship orders) immediately following having been looked after;
  2. Members of the Eastern Christian Churches (which include the Orhodox Churches);
  3. Members of the Church of England;
  4. Members of other Christian denominations;
  5. Members of non-Christian faiths;
  6. Other Children

In criteria D2 to D5 above, validated documentary evidence of membership of the faith will need to be provided by the priest or relevant religious body.


In the event of a tie for a place after the above criteria have been applied, a ballot system of random allocation will be used with each tied candidate’s name being entered into the ballot and names then selected randomly by an independent external organisation (The Electoral Reform Services), until a rank of all candidates has been established. If the School is oversubscribed by practising Catholic applicants, no children from Category C or D will be included in the tie-break.

How is an application made?

All applicants must complete

  • The London Oratory School’s Music Enquiry Form
  • The London Oratory School’s Supplementary Information Form, which may be obtained from the School, which must be completed in accordance with the instructions printed on the form and returned to the School on or before the applicable closing date given in these arrangements.

Applications which are received by the School without a Supplementary Information Form or Music Inquiry Form, which are incomplete or which are received by the School after the applicable closing date, will only be considered if there are fewer than 20 applicants for the 20 places. The School is under no obligation to advise parents on or before the applicable closing date that the application is in any way deficient.


Offers of places will be sent to parents by the third week in February 2018 providing them with the necessary forms to complete, asking them to reply within five working days so that places not taken up at this stage can then be offered to the next most suitable candidates on the list.

In Year Admissions:

Applications for In-Year admissions are made directly to the school. If a place is available and there is no waiting list, the boy will be admitted. If more applications are received than there are places available then applications will be ranked by the governing body in accordance with the oversubscription criteria. If a place cannot be offered at this time then you may ask us for the reasons and you will be informed of your right of appeal. You will be offered the opportunity of being placed on the waiting list. This waiting list will be maintained by the governing body in the order of the oversubscription criteria and not in the order in which the applications are received. Names are removed from the list at the end of each academic year. When a place becomes available the governing body will re-rank the list and make an offer.

Fair Access

The school is committed to taking its fair share of children who are vulnerable and/or hard to place, as set out in locally agreed protocols. Accordingly, outside the normal admissions round the governing body is empowered to give absolute priority to a child where admission is requested under any local protocol  that has been agreed by both the Diocese and the governing body for the current school year. The governing body has this power even when admitting the child would mean exceeding the published admission number.

Children Educated Outside Their Chronological Age Group

Parents may apply for their child to be educated outside his/her chronological age group i.e. a year behind or a year ahead. Application should be made to the Chair of Governors at the time of application and any supporting evidence should be submitted at the same time. Governors will consider each case on its own merits and permission will only be given in exceptional circumstances.


Looked after child’ has the same meaning as in S.22 of the Children Act 1989, and means any child in the care of a local authority or provided with accommodation by them (e.g. children with foster parents at the time of making an application to the school).

Adopted’. An adopted child is a child who is adopted under the terms of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 s.46 (adoption orders).

Child Arrangements Order’. A Child Arrangements order is an order under the terms of the Children Act 1989 s.8 settling the arrangements to be made as to the person with whom the child is to live.  Children ‘looked after’ immediately before the order is made qualify in this category.

Special Guardianship Order’. A special guardianship order is an order under the terms of the Children Act 1989 s.14A which defines it as an order appointing one or more individuals to be a child’s special guardian(s).

Eastern Christian Church’ includes Orthodox Churches, and is normally evidenced by a Certificate of Baptism or Reception from the authorities of that Church.

Christian’ for the purposes of this policy, means a member of one of the Churches affiliated to ‘Churches Together in Britain and Ireland’.


Extract from the current Code of Canon Law, promulgated by Pope John Paul II on 25th January 1983. For members of Eastern Catholic churches the relevant CCEO canons will apply.


Canon 1246. Sunday, on which by apostolic tradition the paschal mystery is celebrated, is to be observed in the universal Church as the primary day of obligation. The following feast days are also to be observed as holy days of obligation: the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Apostles Peter and Paul and All Saints

Canon 1247. On Sundays and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are obliged to participate in the Mass. They are also to abstain from such work or business that would inhibit the worship to be given to God, the joy proper to the Lord’s Day, or the due relaxation of mind and body.

Canon 1248. The obligation of participating in the Mass is satisfied by one who assists at Mass wherever it is celebrated in the Catholic rite, either on the holy day of obligation itself or on the evening of the previous day. If it is impossible to participate in a Eucharistic celebration, either because no sacred minister is available or for some other grave reason, the faithful are strongly recommended to take part in the liturgy of the Word, if there be such in the parish church or some other sacred place, which is celebrated in accordance with the provisions laid down by the diocesan Bishop; or to spend an appropriate time in prayer, whether personally or as a family or as occasion presents, in groups of families.


Canon 867. §1 Parents are obliged to see that their infants are baptised within the first few weeks. As soon as possible after the birth, indeed even before it, they are to approach the parish priest to ask for the sacrament for their candidate, and to be themselves duly prepared for it. §2 If the infant is in danger of death, it is to be baptised without any delay.

  1. Practising Catholic family is defined as meeting obligations under Code of Canon Law, laid out in Notes below
  2. This is to meet obligation for baptism of infants, under Code of Canon Law, Canon 867 in Notes below
  3. Parents should discuss their reasons for a late baptism with their parish priest and the priest will determine whether there was good reason for a late baptism.