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Psychological Issues Grounds for Appeal?

(23 Posts)
MrWizard Thu 16-Apr-15 14:53:23

Hello Everybody

Our child was recently refused his first choice of primary school.

Without going into too much detail, he has been through medical hell over the last three years, and his psychologist recently told us that because she believed it to be very important that he goes to this particular school, she would write a letter the the appeals commission should he be refused.

My problem is that although it might be psychologically detrimental for him should he end up in a different primary school, it seems that medical grounds are not grounds for an appeal due to the maximum class size.

Am I right in assuming that even with supporting evidence in favour of his acceptance from the hospital, this appeal will essentially be a waste of time?

Really worried :-/

TheBoov Thu 16-Apr-15 14:55:21

You are meant to apply with the relevant statement in the first place I think.

BarbarianMum Thu 16-Apr-15 15:00:57

If you wanted his psychological issues to be considered in allocating a place, then you should have included the relevant info with the initial application. Did you do this?

If you didn't and the school is now full (30 in a class), it will be an infant class size appeal and pretty much impossible to win unless you can show the admissions authority made a mistake.

steppemum Thu 16-Apr-15 15:02:28

a successful appeal could get him to top of waiting list, which, depending on school, intake and area, may get him a place by September

tiggytape Thu 16-Apr-15 15:02:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tiggytape Thu 16-Apr-15 15:03:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrWizard Thu 16-Apr-15 15:05:41

"If you wanted his psychological issues to be considered in allocating a place, then you should have included the relevant info with the initial application. Did you do this?"

We didn't, no. At the time of making the application, he had not been assigned a psychologist.

"a successful appeal could get him to top of waiting list, which, depending on school, intake and area, may get him a place by September"

This is somewhat reassuring at least, thanks

admission Thu 16-Apr-15 15:40:40

If you can show that the psychologist was not assigned or saw your child before the cutoff date of January 16th then you could try raising the subject at appeal. You would need a strongly worded letter from the psychologist confirming when they first saw your child, what in their opinion is wrong and why the school you prefer is the only one that is suitable.
In a normal appeal situation that would give you a reasonable chance of success but for a primary school that is subject to the infant class size regs then your chances of success are slim. These schools are where the intake into the year group is 15,30, 45, 60 etc and there is a limit on the class zie of 30.
Under those circumstances you can only win the appeal because a mistake was made - seems unlikely or the decision reached is completely unreasonable - but in a legal sense unreasonable is a completely perverse decision. Again that seems unlikely if the admission authority did not even know about the issue.
Having said that you have nothing to loose by appealing and some appeal panels may admit.They will probably have a great deal of sympathy for your situation and I know from experience that in those situations the panel will look very carefully for a reason to admit when they know under a normal admission appeal situation they would admit based on the evidence submitted.
There is another point to the appeal as well and that is that sometimes the admission authority do feel a responsibility towards the pupil and can sometimes engineer a situation for admission. However if you do not appeal and make them aware of the situation then they will never be even considering the point.

kla73 Thu 16-Apr-15 18:10:31

The appeals process and waiting list are separate so an appeal will not move him up the waiting list. However I would have thought that along side an appeal you could ask for the medical evidence to be considered as he may be placed in a higher admissions category (if a category for exceptional need exists at that school) and therefore moving him up the waiting list increasing your chances of a place from the waiting list.

meditrina Thu 16-Apr-15 18:24:42

Yes, the WL and appeals process are separate.

But if an Appeals Panel found the medical evidence persuasive (but still declined to admit immediately because no mistake had actually been made as the information was not available at time of decision) I think would be extremely hard for the Admissions Authority to ignore this ie refuse to place the DC in the category now, this taking them to the top of the WL.

I think that there's also a reasonable chance an Appeals Panel might look sympathetically at this one, depending on exactly what the condition is and what facilites the school has that are unique or are vastly better than the offered school.

admission Thu 16-Apr-15 18:52:32

That might be the case but OP would have to formally ask the LA to consider under the medical category and it could well be a long drawn out saga.

prh47bridge Fri 17-Apr-15 00:08:41

I think would be extremely hard for the Admissions Authority to ignore this

I disagree.

The appeal will have failed. The panel can't tell the LA to move the child up the waiting list. The OP would have used up her one appeal for this school so couldn't appeal again on the basis that someone else has been admitted from the waiting list ahead of her son. In my experience the admission authority is likely to take the view that the panel's views are not binding and that what matters is their own assessment of the medical evidence.

meditrina Fri 17-Apr-15 06:39:21

I didn't mean the Panel can directly instruct the Admissions Authority about the WL.

The medical evidence has not yet been submitted, so the Admissions Authority cannot have assessed it. There's no reason at this stage to assume they would seek to form a different view to that taken by the Panel.

As admission says, the parent would need to go back to the Authority to request this (if indeed these particular circumstances come about, which of course they may not). The Authority can of course make its own assessment at this point. But more straightforward to endorse the Panel view (unless their rep at the appeal felt the Panel's decision anomalous).

tiggytape Fri 17-Apr-15 08:07:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

steppemum Fri 17-Apr-15 14:17:34

I know appeals and waiting list are separate, but if you win an appeal, but the class is full, my understanding was that the school can't give him a place but that he has the right to the first available space (there is a term for this but can't remember it) it is something like they are the next in line for a place but not on the waiting list.

perfectly prepared to be told I am wrong grin

eddiemairswife Fri 17-Apr-15 14:30:56

If you win your appeal you are admitted. If it is an Infant Class Size appeal where the class is full the child is admitted as an 'excepted' child .

tiggytape Fri 17-Apr-15 15:03:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

steppemum Fri 17-Apr-15 15:28:28

Thanks for that explanation, now I understand

MrWizard Fri 01-May-15 13:14:46

Thanks for everybody's responses.

The appeal and supporting letter from the doctor has been submitted, it will now be just a case of waiting to see.

(Oh, and not that it matters so much, but I noticed a lot of people referring to me as a she; so just for the record, I'm a he not a she)

admission Fri 01-May-15 17:38:54

The clue might have been in your name!

MrWizard Wed 08-Jul-15 10:39:50

Not that anybody likely cares, but we just got the result from the appeal and he's been awarded a place at the school smile thanks to everybody for your advice and support

BarbarianMum Wed 08-Jul-15 10:47:06

smile Glad it worked out.

Tigsley2 Fri 10-Jul-15 00:37:37

My friend did not realise 'her own' medical issues could be included on her child's application form.

She did not gain a place at the school - I believe she appealed, but as the error was hers (not giving the information) the appeal 'failed' .

she was moved to the top of the waiting list, and finally got a place in year 3! (when another child left - tis a popular school)

So whilst it may not impact on a waiting list in some cases it can...

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