The deadline to make an appeal against school admission decisions relating to secondary education is fast approaching.
National Offer Day on the 3rd March 2014 provided parents and pupils with a determination on whether they had been successful in their primary option of school under the admissions code.
The relevant admissions authority must publish an appeals timetable on their website by the 28th February each year and reference should be made to this to confirm the timescale for appeals which must be at least 20 school days from the national offer day.
Some admissions authorities may have provided for a longer period in which to make an appeal but 20 school days is the minimum (which takes us roughly to the 28th March 2014 in the current admissions round).
Once an appeal is lodged, it must then be heard within 40 school days of the appeals deadline. It is still possible to appeal out of time but this may cause a delay in the case being considered by the appeal panel.
If you are appealing, then you need to get some information together in order to provide the best chances of success. This includes consideration of the following issues:
- What was the admissions policy of the school? Check the school website or local authority website to view this and ensure that the correct policy has been followed.
- What is the Published Admission Number of the school?
- What is the oversubscription policy? Has it been applied correctly?
- You may also want to check the School Admissions Code of Practice 2012, School Admissions Appeals Code 2012 and relevant parts of the School’s Standards and Framework Act 1998.
- An appeal must be made in writing so make sure you do this in good time seeking advice on grounds to appeal if you need assistance.
- Will you need assistance or representation at the appeal hearing? If so it is a good idea to seek help as soon as possible.
You are entitled to be represented at an appeal hearing by a friend or lawyer and our Education team can provide assistance should you require it. This may be preparation for the hearing or actual representation at the hearing itself. Fixed fee quotations are available.
By Mike Pemberton, Partner and head of the education law team
Should you wish to speak to someone about an admission appeal then please contact us on 0333 344 4772.