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NI Grammar School Admission criteria for
September 2022
These details will be updated in January 2024.

Admission criteria for grammar schools in Northern Ireland for entrance in September 2022 have changed.

In the autumn term of 2021-2022 school year the Transfer Test - either the AQE or GL (PPTC) version has was used as part of the admissions policy for entry into year 8 by many schools. However some schools decided not to use either the AQE or GL (PPTC) Transfer Test and so those schools have developed new admission criteria for entry into Year 8 in September 2022.

These Grammar School admission criteria can vary greatly from school to school and you should make yourself aware of all the criteria details as they will determine which children will be admitted to this school in September 2022.
Make sure that you provide the school with all the information that they require as the school will use the information that you provide when making their decision about which children are admitted in September 2022.

Loreto College Coleraine



Castlerock Road, Coleraine

Co Derry BT51 3JZ



Telephone: 028 7034 3611/7035 7149

Fax: 028 7035 3037

Principal: (Acting) Miss Belinda Toner, BSc Econ Hon PGCE

Chairperson of the Board of Governors: Mr Gerry McCabe

Voluntary Grammar School  (Denominational)

Age Range of Pupils:   11-18

Admissions Number:   160

Enrolment Number:   1010

Virtual Open Day

The College will hold a Virtual Open Day available on the school website from Saturday 8 January 2022.

Anyone requesting a School Prospectus can do so by contacting the school office.


A Capital Fee of £100 per pupil is charged. Copies of the school prospectus are available on request from the school office.


Loreto College Coleraine is a Catholic, co-educational, Voluntary Grammar Day School and will accept applicants who are suitable for the type of education being offered by the College, being applicants who and whose parent(s) or person(s) with parental responsibility are, in the opinion of the Board of Governors, in agreement with the philosophy and aims of the College. The Board expects that applicants and their parent(s) or person(s) with parental responsibility are in full agreement with the aims and philosophy of the College.


Applicants should note that they may be required to produce documents verifying their address or other information pertinent to the school’s admission criteria. The provision of false or incorrect information or failure to produce this within the deadline set by the College can result in the withdrawal of the offer of a place by the College. Original documents are required; facsimiles, scans or photocopies will not be accepted. It is emphasised that the onus is on parents/guardians to ensure that all of the information required is provided. Parents are advised to retain a copy of all documentation.


Pupils resident in Northern Ireland at the time of their application will be considered before any pupil not so resident.

When considering which children should be selected for admission, the Board of Governors will only take into account information which is detailed on or attached to the application form. Parents should therefore ensure that all information pertaining to their child and relevant to the school’s admission criteria is stated correctly on the application form or attached to it.

Respective functions of the Board of Governors and Principal in relation to Admissions to the school

The Board of Governors delegates to an admissions sub-committee the responsibility of selecting pupils for admission to the College. Where the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available, applicants will be selected by the admissions sub-committee of the Board of Governors according to the Admissions Criteria.

In the event of the number of children applying exceeding the places available the following criteria will be applied in the order set down. If the Admissions Number is exceeded by application of a particular criterion, then the remaining criteria will be used, in turn, to reduce the number of children still being considered for places until the admissions number is reached: -

1. Applicants who have selected Loreto College as their first preference school. 2. Applicants who, at the date of application, have a sibling who is currently enrolled as a pupil of the College or have been selected for admission in September 2022*: see footnote 1 below.

3. Applicants with a sibling who is a past pupil of the College*: see footnote 1 below.

4. Applicants who are the eldest or only child of the family: see foot note 2 below.

5. Applicants who, at the date of application, have a parent who is currently on the permanent staff of the College.

6. Applicants from the following primary schools, directly affected by the closure of St Joseph’s College, Coleraine: St. John’s PS, Coleraine / St Malachy’s PS, Coleraine / St Colum’s PS, Portstewart / St Patrick’s PS, Portrush.

7. Applicants from the primary schools listed in the table below:



St Canice's Feeny


Honourable Irish Society

St Columba’s Ballerin

Bunscoil an Chaistil


St Columba's Kilrea

Carhill Integrated


St Finlough’s, Ballykelly


Mill Strand

St John’s Dernaflaw



St John's Swatragh



St Joseph’s Dunloy



St Mary’s Gortnaghey

DH Christie Memorial

Roe Valley Integrated

St Matthew’s Drumsurn


St Aidan’s Magilligan

St Patrick’s & St Brigid’s Ballycastle

Gaelscoil Leim an Mhadaidh

St Brigid’s Ballymoney

St Patrick's & St Joseph’s Garvagh

Gaelscoil Neachtain

St Brigid's Cloughmills

St Patrick's Loughgiel


St Brigid’s Tirkane

St Patrick's Rasharkin

Harpur’s Hill

St Canice’s Dungiven


8. Applicants selected using a random tiebreaker: see footnote3 below


1.Where applicable “sibling” is defined as another child of the family, in accordance with Department of Education Circular 2016/15(as revised). Name and year group of present pupil and name (at time of attendance) and dates of attendance of past pupil must be provided.

2. Twins and other multiples who are eldest in the family are treated as joint eldest children.

This criterion intends to prioritise the child of a family that has not had the opportunity to have an elder child to be enrolled at the College. The following circumstances will therefore be treated as meeting this criterion:

(i)The Applicant is more than seven school years younger than the next eldest child of the family.

(ii)The family has moved residence so that a child who is not the eldest child of the family is the first child of that family to have the practical opportunity to apply to the school.

(iii) One or more elder children of the family attends a special school and the child applying is therefore the eldest child of the family in a position to apply to the College.

A verifying letter must be submitted at the time of application stating that the child is the eldest or only child of the family, the verifier must have known the child and family for at least two years. It must be signed by one of the following who is not a member of the applicant’s family: A primary school Principal, an elected public representative, a medical practitioner a solicitor, a member of the clergy.

3.Tie Breaker: In the event of a tie for a remaining place or places, which is not resolved by the application of the criteria above, further selection will occur on the basis of Random Selection. Random Selection: Each application at this stage will be allocated a random number electronically generated via an online random generator. The applications will then be ranked in order, with the higher numbers having preference. Places will be allocated, and a waiting list will be formed according to the rank order.

Verification of Information

The Board of Governors reserves the right to require such supplementary evidence as it may require, to support or verify information on any application/transfer application.

Those making applications should also note the provision of false information or incorrect information, or the failure to provide verifying documents according to the required deadline, may result in either a withdrawal of a place or the inability of the school to offer a place.


Parents/Guardians who wish to have their child considered for admission in the event of a place arising after 1 September should write to the Principal clearly stating this. Written acknowledgement will be issued. In the event of such a vacancy arising, the above criteria will be applied to these applications only.

Number of Applications and Admissions

Year   2019/20

Admissions No.   160

Total Applications All Preferences   190

Total Admissions   162*

Year   2020/21

Admissions No.   160

Total Applications All Preferences   168

Total Admissions   160

Year   2021/22

Admissions No.   160

Total Applications All Preferences   176

Total Admissions   160

* 1 on appeal

This table does not include children who were admitted to the school with a statement of special educational needs.

More detailed data on application and admission numbers is contained in the school prospectus.


Loreto College Coleraine is a Catholic, coeducational, Voluntary Grammar Day School and will accept applicants who are suitable for the type of education being offered by the College, being applicants who and whose parent(s) or person(s) with parental responsibility are, in the opinion of the Board of Governors, in agreement with the philosophy and aims of the College. The Board assumes that applicants and their parents(s) or person(s) with parental responsibility are in full agreement with the aims and philosophy of the College. Applicants must be prepared to sign that they accept the rules of the College and will adhere to these rules and maintain a serious commitment to study. The Board reserves the right to refuse admission to any applicant who, or whose parent(s) or person(s) with parental responsibility, fails to be in agreement with the school’s philosophy or aims and in this regard the decision of the Board shall be final and binding on all applicants.

It is the College’s policy to admit new pupils only at the start of the academic year, except in exceptional circumstances. When there are places available, the College wishes to accept applicants

who are suitable for the type of education offered by the College, and who are in agreement with the Philosophy and Aims of the College. Any applications must be received before 30 June prior to entrance in September.

The following criteria will be applied:

(a) For admission to KS3 the applicant’s report records must provide evidence of the ability to cope with the work being done in the year group applied for.

(b) For admissions to KS4, applicants must have achieved at least Level 5 in end of KS3 Assessments, in Communication and Using Mathematics. Where KS3 Assessments are not available the applicant’s report record must demonstrate comparable performance/ achievement.

Where there are more applicants who meet these criteria than there are places in the year group, preference will be given as follows:

(i) Applicants whose family has moved into the catchment area of the College within the last year.

(ii) Applicants whose sibling(s) will be pupil(s) of the College during the year for which application is made.

(iii) Applicants who had previously applied for a place in the College.

(iv) Those residing closest to the College as measured on the map by the straight-line distance from the home to the middle gate of the College.

Parents/Guardians should contact the College in the first instance and thereafter forthwith, make application by completing form AP1.

Applicants will be informed before the end of July prior to entrance in September.

AGREED 15/12/2021

** This information is provided for guidance only and while the content is, to the best of our knowledge, accurate we cannot be held in any way responsible for any errors or omissions that it may contain. Please contact your LA or chosen grammar school for all admission and Transfer Test queries.**

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