A working mother will have to make a 12-mile round trip to drop her four-year-old son off at school from September.
Sarah Barnet is a full time nanny living in Avenue Gate, Loughton, which is within the catchment for Staples Road Primary School in Loughton.
However she has been told her son, Archie, is 34th on a list for a place at the school in September and she faces taking him to Hillhouse Primary School six miles away in Waltham Abbey.
Miss Barnet is unable to get Archie into any of the schools nearby having been told the waiting lists are so long he would not have a chance of getting a place.
Miss Barnet said: “I want everyone to know how upsetting this is for mums.
“There’s no way I can drop my son off and get to work in time.
“It’s a complete disgrace we cannot get into our local catchment school; I fear he’s not going to have a school to go to in September.”
Miss Barnet has no other means of getting Archie to Waltham Abbey other than driving him however that would leave her unable to nanny and cost a lot more in petrol than she currently spends.
She said: “My mum could help out but she lives in Barkingside and his dad works full time.
“There’s no way I can do it, I might have to home school him.”
The problem appears to be widespread in the town and Essex County Councillor for Loughton Central, Chris Pond has had complaints about the issue.
He said: “The volume of complaints I’ve had on this shows me that primary school provision in Loughton is grossly inadequate.
“The problem might require a new school to be built.”
Children in care are prioritised as are those with siblings at a school.
Places given to others living within the catchment area of a school are decided by the straight-line distance they live from the school.
Cllr Pond said most of those offered places lived closer than a straight-line distance of 0.6 miles from the school.