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Appeals advise please :)

(8 Posts)
doley Sat 08-Jan-11 03:15:09

We are returning to the UK in October with our 3 children .
Our eldest son will be going in to yr8 but unfortunately

the school that is in our catchment is oversubscribed .

It is an excellent secondary and we had hoped to have no problems ...

Anyway as we are still in the US the local county has told us we must fill out an application anyway ,timing /out of year in- take apparently .

If by October there are still no places he will be given a place in the next nearest school ,transport provided!!!

I have been told I will have the right to an appeal ,I have no idea if this is legal formality ,or do I have a good chance at this stage ?

I would suspect that providing transport for him will be more of a pain in the butt, than giving him a place with all the other kids from the village (thats me though )

I am emotionally upset by this too ,it will not be easy to move him from the US with all his American ways +then having to change schools in the UK more than once .

Could anyone shed any light on appeals ,how long they normally take ...well just anything that could help really

Thank you all ,so much !

purepurple Sat 08-Jan-11 08:20:15

We appealed to get DS into the local high school when we moved from Co. Durham to Lancs when he was in Year8 too. We appealed on the grounds that the school they wanted to send him to was too far away. I don't drive, so he would have been getting several buses a day, in a strange city and I simply wasn't going to put him in that position of vulnerability.
We also suggested that going to a school away from where he lived would mean he would have difficulty in making friends and settling in his new town, as all his school friends would not live locally.
I thought of every single disadvantage and wrote them all down in the appeals letter. We also wrote to our local MP and asked for his support. He wrote a letter supporting our appeal.
After we sent the forms back, it was a few weeks before DH had to go to the appeals panel, and state his case. They asked him lots of questions and he was brilliant.
A few weeks later we got a letter saying we had won.
So you have nothing to lose by appealing. Good luck

cory Sat 08-Jan-11 10:21:46

From the pov of the local authority, they have fairly strict guidelines as to how many children they can admit, so providing transport is probably usually the easier option for them. Having said that, you can always try appealing, you never know.

prh47bridge Sat 08-Jan-11 21:20:00

The fact that you have a right to an appeal is no indication of your chances of success. Whenever a child is refused entry to a school there is an automatic right of appeal.

Any appeal must be heard within 30 school days of the appeal being lodged. That does mean it may take longer during school holidays, of course. You should hear the result of the appeal a few days after the hearing.

The LA will argue that admitting your son to your preferred school will cause prejudice to the school, which means it will make it harder to run the school properly and that the quality of education offered by the school will suffer. You will need to argue that your child's education will be prejudiced (i.e. suffer) if he doesn't go to this school. Arguments about transport difficulties, child care problems and the like will not normally help. In order to win you need to find out what facilities this school has and the allocated school doesn't which are particularly useful for your son. Look at after school clubs, for example.

An appeal is always worthwhile in this situation as long as you don't get your hopes too high. Even if you haven't got much of a case you may strike it lucky and get a sympathetic appeal panel.

admission Sat 08-Jan-11 23:35:14

PRH has made some good points.
The appeal is on two parts. The first part is where the LA argue that to admit another pupil to the cohort will cause prejudice to the school, which means it will make it harder to run the school properly and that the quality of education offered by the school will suffer. You will have been sent the case that the Local authority will make before the appeal hearing and you try and attack the Local Authorities case as much as possible. It is difficult to advise on this without knowing what case is being made but you should be looking hopefully for more pupils being in other years, in which case you can argue the school has adequately coped with higher numbers in the past.
In the second part of the appeal you will be stating why the panel should give you a place at the school, so I would start off with the fact that coming from the USA they know nobody and need to generate a local cohort of friends, hence the local school. Emphasis the need for a local school also because it will be a very different situation from that in the USA, year 8 is a very important year and you need to have a settled family life based on a local school. then as PRH says highlight if at all possible a number of positive reasons for needing to go to this school. Don't be negative about the offered school but be positove about the prefered school.

doley Sun 09-Jan-11 01:54:04

WOW ,

Thank you all so much for these details -I am very grateful for all the informed help

I will read these again and make notes lol !

It looks like a challenge anyway ,something I really hadn't thought I woud have to deal with

kayah Sun 09-Jan-11 02:06:18

there are books about it too - hope you won't need those
www.amazon.co.uk/How-Win-Your-School-Appeal/dp/140 8111403/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_b

doley Mon 10-Jan-11 20:17:26

Kayah ,Thank you so much

Lets hope I don't ...

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