Parents are being asked their views on plans to overhaul schools admissions criteria in Hertfordshire starting from next year.

Hertfordshire County Council has said it intends to scrap rule six of its admission code which grants children priority to a school if it is "it is the nearest maintained school or academy that is co-educational, non-educational, non-faith and non-partially selective".

The authority wants to replace it with a rule that gives children priority to a school solely based on distance to their home.

The council argues that with the increasing numbers of free schools, academies, studio schools and university technical colleges in the county it is difficult for the authority to accurately identify what alternative schools are available for children.

It says this could lead to confusion and mistakes being made in the admissions process, which is why it is keen to simplify admission rules.

The council also wants to remove the word "Hertfordshire" from rule six to prevent pupils with schools outside the county closer to them having an unfair advantage.

Chris Hayward, Cabinet Member for Education, said: "We would welcome the views of parents on these proposals, which aim to ensure we continue to have clear and fair admission arrangements.

"Parents who wish to comment on the admission arrangements for schools which set their own rules can do so through the governing bodies of those schools."

A public consultation on the proposals is open until 28 February 2014.

For full details, and to respond to the consultation, go to