Secondary School Offer Letters Due Next Week …
So, you've visited the local schools, worked out the bus routes, sorted out childcare arrangements, navigated the local authority admissions website and chosen the right (and best) secondary school for your 11 year-old. But what happens when the decision letter arrives and your child doesn't get their first choice secondary school?
The thought may fill you with dread but in London 31% of parents don't get their first-choice secondary school. Some parents are even allocated a non-preferred school - a school that wasn’t on their application form.
What can you do if this happens to you? What you need to know is that you have the right to appeal to an independent appeal panel!
Submissions and appeals
Appeals are very worthwhile. Local authorities process thousands of applications at a time and make mass decisions about a very large number of children. Under scrutiny these decisions don't always hold up.
Our Education team regularly helps parents get the school they want and think is best for their child using their knowledge of local authority filtering and selection mechanisms to write extremely persuasive submissions. Where the chosen school isn't given, we can work alongside parents in the background or more visibly helping them navigate what can be a stressful and time-consuming appeal process.
In particular, our Education team has experience of the information Appeal Panels need and the most persuasive and effective way to present this. Panel members are independent of the school and are normally receptive where a calm well thought out and factual approach is taken.
The Appeal hearing process comes in two stages. We have had particular success challenging decisions on the basis of pupil numbers, as well as at the second stage where the focus is on a child's specific circumstances.
Admissions as a result of appeals are in addition to the school’s published admission numbers, and detailed knowledge of what the panel looks for is essential to a successful appeal. We help parents put together the information, documents and other evidence they need and prepare them for the questions they'll be asked. We will support and guide them through the whole process, with the aim of getting the place they want for their child.
The articles published on this website, current at the date of publication, are for reference purposes only. They do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Specific legal advice about your own circumstances should always be sought separately before taking any action.