There are always two dates for the CSSE exam, the main date and the reserve date for those who are ill or feel unable to sit an exam on a Saturday for religious reasons. The two sets of papers have always been different for as long as most of us can remember. Normally, the reserve date is used only for those two reasons (although last September about 20 of the hundred or so Southend / Westcliff 'second sitters' were from a school which had helpfully booked its year 6 residential for the weekend of the main sitting
) and the numbers are significantly less than on the main date. However, this year the CSSE stated on its website near the end of the registration period firstly that some venues were full on the main date,then that all were and parents should book for the reserve date.