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Primary in year application Appeal- on the basis of not breaching infant class size limit??

(18 Posts)
esty1212 Thu 07-Mar-13 12:29:33

Hello, Can anyone help?? I would like to find out what my chances are of wining an appeal on the basis of school not accepting my child because they claim to have all spaces filled in yr 1. Their capacity at the moment is 27 but they have just decided to increase this upcoming 2013 reception intake to 30. If they were to take on my child I personally can not see it doing any harm because they are not exceeding the legal limit which i believe is 30. Also, its very clear that they do have sufficient space to take on extra 3 students as they have now decided to increase their reception intake- which was previously 27. i don't really want to go down the appeals route but i do feel like i have a valid case. what do you think? However if anyone does feel my case is weak please please let me know how. Any advice would be very much appreciated.smile

prh47bridge Thu 07-Mar-13 13:58:01

The fact that they won't be breaching the class size limit means you have a chance of winning. The fact they have increased PAN also helps as it suggests they can take more pupils. But you also need to make out a positive case as to why your child needs to go to this school. Simply showing that the infant class size limit will not be breached is unlikely to be enough on its own.

tiggytape Thu 07-Mar-13 14:58:10

Don't be scared to go down the appeals route - it is the only way to get what you want in this case. The school don't have the discretion to just admit one more unofficially even if they think they could cope (which they must do given that they will have 30 per class very soon).

As prh says, your appeal should not focus solely on this - apart from anything even if the panel agree the school can take more but there might be other people also appealing for a place so you need to give your reasons for wanting a place at the school. Try to focus on things this school can offer that would really benefit your child. Nothing to do with childcare or logistics - more things like clubs, curriculum, specialist teaching etc.

esty1212 Thu 07-Mar-13 16:53:07

thank you @ prh and tiggytape- response much appreciated. at the moment DS is attending catholic school 2 boroughs away - we moved to this borough over a year ago and have since processed 2 in yr application. The school which i am questioning is also a catholic sch and just so happens to be my nearest one and the only faith sch in my parish boundary. from all my research it is also a very good and reputable sch. the reasons why i would like my DS to go this school is because she will receive similar style teaching in terms of religious education which she is used to. would you advise me to use class size as the main reason followed by my reasons above?

admission Thu 07-Mar-13 23:52:24

The school via the local authority will normally only admit to the agreed admission number. The admission number is that in the year of entry, that is reception year and then as the cohort moves up the school it stays with that number. So for the school in question it is 27. With the change to the admission number of 30 in reception it is obvious that in 2 years time all the infant classes will have 30 in them, rather than the 27 now.
Admission appeal panels are not daft. Whilst the LA will hold the line that the admission number is 27 and therefore will not admit above 27, the reality is that anybody going to appeal has a good chance of getting a place with a reasonable application up until the year group has 30.
If the school is good then it will not be long before all the places are gone, so I would apply for a place now, knowing you will be rejected and then you can go to appeal. But do not surprised if there is a good little bunch of parents who all have the same idea!
Class size is not the reason you should be asking for the place, your appeal should be based on being the nearest catholic school, child already getting a catholic education, the school is really good because it does .........

prh47bridge Thu 07-Mar-13 23:53:02

Don't use class size as a reason. You use that to attack the school's case that they can't possibly be expected to take any more pupils. They clearly can as they are below the infant class size limit and they have just increased PAN.

The reasons in your latest post are better for appeal. Skip the stuff about it being a good and reputable school - that won't help. If you are Catholics I would concentrate on wanting a Catholic education for your son and the similarity to his current school. If you can find anything else the school offers that would be particularly useful for your son you should mention that as well.

esty1212 Thu 14-Mar-13 14:32:04

Hi all,
Apologies for the late reply - i have been extremely busy with sorting out appeals. Thank you all so much for your advice, much much appreciated.
So.. a lot has happened in the last week- we have been offered a place at my third choice school which i am happy about as it now means i wont have to do as much travelling. The offer came after i submitted the appeals form and although i can withdraw i am still going ahead. Very nervous about it all as although i know they are not at full capacity, feel that my reasons may not be as valid. I believe that this school will serve my daughters interest a lot more than the school offered because they have a lot more extracurricular activities e.g sports wise and also a lot of lunch time clubs. However because i have now been offered a catholic school i am worried that they could now reject my faith based reasons??? however i really do think that would be much better forDS to attend school in parish district as it will help with his social networking and also integration in the church itself. What do think of my reasons thus far? the school i have been offered don't even have a website - where as my DS's current school and one which i submitted appeal for have a website and login area for student learning. Are these valid reasons??

prh47bridge Thu 14-Mar-13 18:50:20

The faith based reasons become less compelling if you have been offered a place at a Catholic school. The website isn't particularly useful but the extracurricular activities and lunchtime clubs are, especially if you can show that they are especially relevant to your son. Wanting to attend school in the parish may also carry some weight but it depends on the panel - I have encountered panels who think this is important and others who think it is irrelevant.

esty1212 Thu 14-Mar-13 21:16:52

Mmmm thank you @prh47bridge. Looks like Its going to be a lit more difficult now... If you have any tips please do let me know.

prh47bridge Thu 14-Mar-13 23:17:38

As Admission says, given the increase in PAN anyone going to appeal for Y1 or Y2 has a good chance of winning their appeal until there are 30 in each year. If you are the only appeal you should have a good chance of winning, although it isn't guaranteed. If there are multiple appeals you need to make sure you have a strong case. Make the best case you can as to why this is the right school for your son. Concentrate on the way he will be disadvantaged if he is not admitted. Remember that things like the school's Ofsted reports and reputation are irrelevant. Extra-curricular activities, lunchtime clubs and the like are highly relevant provided you can show they are particularly useful for your child.

esty1212 Fri 15-Mar-13 00:25:30

Thank you so helpful. So with the example of the extra sport clubs they run because my DS has a strong interest and currently attends private session, could I argue that by him being admitted will help develop his interest and skills in this area..? Also how about the clubs which DS has expressed interest In but not on offer at current school? A little confused with what they will accept as valid reasons based on interest particularly bearing in mind he is 6

prh47bridge Fri 15-Mar-13 11:30:30

Yes, that's the kind of thing. Aptitude is better than interest, so if your son is showing aptitude for sports as well as being interested that is worth mentioning.

Basically you are trying to show that your son will be disadvantaged if he does not attend this school but without mentioning Ofsted reports, league table positions and the like.

esty1212 Fri 15-Mar-13 12:35:42

Thank you sooo much . currently waiting for the hearing date. Will let you know how i get on.

esty1212 Sun 17-Mar-13 15:30:30

Hi does any one know roughly how long the hearing takes?

prh47bridge Sun 17-Mar-13 20:36:26

If you mean how long the actual hearing lasts, that depends largely on how much you say! The panel won't thank you if you ramble on endlessly, particularly if they have a lot of cases to get through. But they will want to give you every opportunity to present your case properly.

lovebeingamother Sat 23-Mar-13 17:43:17

Hi esty1212, I have replied to your pm. As to actual hearing timing, in our case, it took about 42 minutes in total from entering the panel room to leaving. They were very busy on the day with back to back appeals.

admission Sat 23-Mar-13 21:33:10

It is totally about the evidence presented and what is being said and more importantly asked by the panel.
This last week I chaired panels for single appeals for two schools, one took just an hour, the second which was a more complicated case took just over two hours.

esty1212 Fri 19-Apr-13 10:38:09

Hi All,
Just wanted to let you know that I went to the appeal and now awaiting feedback. It was very intense and really not sure about it all....
Either way thank you all so much for your advice and assistance, it all certainly did help me !!

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