Help! My child didn’t get in the first place

(22 Posts)
Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 22:57:16

Help please!! Not sure is it the right place to post but I need advice on how to write an appeal for a academy school...

I put my child in a academy school for her first choice, it is not in our borough. It is oversubscribed this year and outstanding.

My child got offered the 4th choice which was outstanding and now requires improvement...

The reason I applied for another borough school is this school is in a much better location and her preschool classmate will be in there. She is very shy and I hope if she had some friends in the same class will help her settle in better.

For the appeal, what should I focus on writing? The weakness of my child that need this school to help? Or the good things about my child that can benifit the school?

Any advice welcome.
Thanks in advance!!!!

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Myothercarisalsoshit Tue 16-Apr-19 23:07:10

The problem with wanting your child to get a place in an ‘outstanding’ School is that many of them haven’t been inspected in years and vary hugely in quality. A school in RI will be working very hard to improve and will not be resting on its laurels.

RaggieDolls Tue 16-Apr-19 23:12:07

If you post in primary education there are lots of people who can advise. I know it's hard when you don't get your choice of school (happened to us 3 years ago) but I can't see this appeal is winnable. You need to demonstrate that the local authority made an error in applying their criteria rather than you think the result is unfair.

RaggieDolls Tue 16-Apr-19 23:14:07

Sorry, just seen you have posted in primary education! For some reason I thought you'd put this in AIBU!

Have you been to visit the school you've been offered?

PanelChair Tue 16-Apr-19 23:25:47

What is the Published Admission Number for your preferred school? If it’s 30 (or a multiple of 30) the Infant Class Size rules will apply and you will win an appeal only if there has been an error which has deprived your child of a place or the decision is so unreasonable as to be irrational. Nothing you have mentioned so far sounds compelling enough to win any appeal, let alone an ICS appeal.

SunburstsOrMarbleHalls Tue 16-Apr-19 23:27:29

Make sure that you have been placed on the waiting list with all of your higher preference schools. Accept the place you have at the moment unless you are prepared to home school or enter independent sector in the worst case scenario. This school will be doing its best to rectify the issues highlighted by Ofsted, have you read the report to find out what specific issues have caused the rating to drop? It can be for many reasons and I'm sure there will be an action plan already in progress to deal with these issues.

You could ring the LA and see if there are any under subscribed schools in your borough that you did not originally apply to and put a late application in.

If the school you are appealing for has a PAN of 30 (or a multiple of this) then you will be dealing with an infant class size rules. This type of appeal can usually only be won if you can prove maladministration (the admission criteria was applied incorrectly when dealing with your application) or if the decision to admit was unreasonable to the point of irrational.

Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:30:31

Yes I’ve been visit. It’s a lovely school. It was only 2 yrs and this is the 3rd year and it’s got outstanding. I think as we live outside the borough that’s give us less chance. Although it’s just 10 mins drive.

The appeal is send to the school directly so I want to know what should I write to make the school give a place to my child.


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PanelChair Tue 16-Apr-19 23:34:22

You cannot make the school give your child a place unless you can succeed at appeal. We’ve just explained how appeals work. Will this be an infant class size appeal (you can work this out if you know the school’s Published Admission Number)?

Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:36:16

Is 60 for the first choice we choose.

I think one of the reason the school we got dropped the rating is they don’t have a head teacher at that time but they have a new one now ...

Thank you, I don’t know how to tag or reply each post. But thank you for the advice.. I just feel sad and stress!

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PanelChair Tue 16-Apr-19 23:37:31

It sounds as if you live an urban area. It would be unusual in any urban area for a child living 10 minutes’ drive away to qualify for a place, so I’m guessing you did not get a place because all places were filled by children who live nearer the school.

Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:39:11

The class is 60. In the school website they said you can appeal and have a form for you to download and fill in as it is an academy school. It have a whole page for you to write why you appeal. And then send it to the school before mid May. So I think maybe I will have a chance to “impress” or “convince” the school to give my chair a place...

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prh47bridge Tue 16-Apr-19 23:40:11

With an admission number of 60 any appeal will be an infant class size case. As has already been said, that means you can only win if a mistake has been made which cost your child a place. You can still try appealing but, from the information you have given here, your chances of success are very low.

Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:40:17


Yes I live in london....and the area I live is not great so the school I’ve got is not great sad

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Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:41:31

Thanks @panelchair

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Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:42:43

@prh47bridge thanks, what should I focus to write in the appeal?

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SunburstsOrMarbleHalls Tue 16-Apr-19 23:43:50

OK so it would be subject to infant class rules (no more than 30 in each class except in limited exceptional circumstances)

Everyone has the right to appeal if they wish but there are only limited circumstances that can win an infant class size appeal. Maladministration or Unreasonable to the point of irrational. Impressing or convincing the panel cannot get around this issue I'm afraid.

Jillbee Tue 16-Apr-19 23:46:56

Thanks, seems no hope... @SunburstsOrMarbleHalls

Will try to call the LA to ask and other school places left. Thanks for your advice smile

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PanelChair Tue 16-Apr-19 23:47:40

You need to check whether the school made any mistake in considering your application. Did they measure the distance correctly, for example? The other things you mention, such as wanting a highly-rated school or bring with friends, are not relevant to an ICS appeal. As prh47bridge says, your chances of success are very low so, if you do not like the school you have been offered, you need to join waiting lists at other schools.

SunburstsOrMarbleHalls Tue 16-Apr-19 23:53:44

Even if your chances are considered low you still have every right to appeal if you wish to.

First check the admission criteria has been correctly applied.

A main point to remember is that you are appealing FOR the school preferred not against the school allocated.

Are there any circumstances that mean that this is the only school that can meet your child's needs?

You mention that your child is shy and has a friend attending the preferred school but this will not really be considered by the panel.

prh47bridge Wed 17-Apr-19 00:13:59

what should I focus to write in the appeal

The first question is whether any mistakes have been made that meant your daughter should have got a place. Did they place her in the correct admissions category. Did they measure the home to school distance correctly.

If there is no evidence of any mistakes you will need to concentrate on arguing that your daughter will be disadvantaged if she doesn't go to this school. Look for things this school offers that are missing from the allocated school and are particularly relevant to your daughter (NOT the Ofsted rating - that won't help your case).

LotsToThinkOf Wed 17-Apr-19 07:33:54

We appealed a few years ago when DS didn't get into our first choice - he'd been at the nursery for 2 years and it's our closest school, but it's a faith school and we are a different faith so people who live a lot further away were given places over us. It's also subject to ICS, we appealed and weren't successful. There's honestly nothing you can say which will change their minds unless you know that the admissions criteria wasn't applied correctly to your child or if someone who has a place has lied about their circumstances.

It's a horrible situation and I know exactly how you feel, in our case it worked out and DS loved the school (none of our choices!). It took me a bit longer to like it but it's actually very good, DS2 is starting in September.

Go and look around the school you've been given, ofsted isn't a reliable source at the moment but if the school has RI then they'll be doing all they can which means your child will benefit. It's not what you expected but it might be alright in the end. Make sure you're on waiting lists for other schools and make sure you accept the place you've been given (we actually aren't required to do anything but some areas have to accept), if you reject the place then they're under no obligation to find another school for your child.

Good luck.

Didiplanthis Wed 17-Apr-19 09:31:25

4 yrs ago my dd didn't get our first choice. The school she got is RI but she has absolutely thrived there. amazing friends doing well academically, happy and nurtured. Ofsted is NOT the be all and end all. Please don't despair.

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