Getting your child in a “good” school is a national sport. Each year the government publishes a league table with a ranking for each school which parents read and cross-reference. This can be found on the Department of Education’s website : http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/performance/. Schools recruit pupils within their catchment area and some parents go to a great lengths to be “seen” as living in the catchment areas of good schools. Newspaper headlines often recount stories of parents going to extreme measures to ensure their child is admitted.
Choosing a school can be a daunting process and is a decision which is going to impact your child’s educational future for the rest of his/her life. To get a good overview of the system and its idiosyncracies, visit the government’s very informative website: https://www.gov.uk/schools-admissions/choosing-schools.
If you are in the UK before the admission process begins, visit the schools that interest you with your child and talk to as many people as you can including teachers, administrators and other parents. If you will be enrolling your child from abroad, try to speak in person with the administration and ask for references. While reading reviews and consulting government ratings is a good start to finding the right school, each individual is different and has different requirements. In either case, formulate questions that pertain to your child and choose a school that best suits his/her particular needs. In most cases, your instinct will be a reliable indicator as to which school is the best fit.