FIGURES revealed by Somerset County Council show an increase in the number of children getting their first choice secondary school.

Cabinet member Cllr John Osman said: “The council’s priority is to give children the best start in life.

“These figures, coupled with raising achievement levels and further investment in building and expanding schools, parents and children are seeing the benefits already.”

For September 2012, 96.1% of children received their first choice secondary school compared to 94.2% last year, up nearly 2%.

There has also been a 1.4% increase in the percentage of children given at least one of their top three school choices - in 2011 it was 97.4% and in 2012, 98.8%.

The figures also reveal that 67 more students have applied for secondary school places this year - last year, 3,829 applications were made and this year has seen that increase to 3,896.