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School Appeals help please

(7 Posts)
charlieandlola Mon 24-Mar-14 20:56:46

I am confused as to the timings of appeals - This is for Y7 entry to an academy this September.

I have written in to say that I wish to appeal.

Do I need to submit my full appeal case within 20 school days, or do I have to wait until I get the letter saying the date of appeal, and then submit it. It seems odd that I have to submit my case in March, and don't get to hear the Academy's point of view until June.

Does the Ben Rooney book still work for Academy appeals, or is it only useful for local authority schools?


tiggytape Mon 24-Mar-14 22:16:38

You have to do more than just write to say you wish to appeal. As a minimum, you must outline your case briefly in March. This means stating which points you will be raising at appeal and the basis for your appeal. You are allowed to add to these points later on and send in more evidence to support your case nearer the date so don't worry about presenting a full case now but simply saying "I want to appeal" is not enough.

The school's case will be given to you much nearer to the time of appeal but is normally pretty standard (they are full, the lunch hall gets crowded, there isn't room for more pupils in some classrooms etc). This does not disadvantage you at all - it is not a court case but a balance between 2 sides presenting their own reasons to an independent panel.

You don't have to wait until the summer to ask questions about things you anticipate being in the school's case eg you can ask for pupil numbers in each year group now if you want to.

charlieandlola Mon 24-Mar-14 22:44:04

Thanks Tiggytape.

tiggytape Mon 24-Mar-14 23:00:56

You're welcome charlieandlola
Most areas have appeal forms to fill in. Have you done this already or have you written a letter? If it is the latter, make sure there isn't an official form you are supposed to have submitted too. This form often comes with instructions telling you to outline the case briefly and setting out deadlines for extra evidence to be submitted.

JohFlow Thu 27-Mar-14 17:09:47

Hi Charlie,

I am appealing to an academy and can verify that the Ben Rooney book is indeed helpful.

I also think that it is pants that the LEA get to see our argument for much longer than we get to see theirs. The more research that you can do the better you will be able to anticipate the sort of areas that the LEA may present.

So yes ; I would recommend the Rooney book for a starter!

Good Luck x

tiggytape Thu 27-Mar-14 22:40:43

The arguments most schools will raise are fairly similar.
They will say that they are full and that taking more children will have detrimental impact on the effective education of the other children at the school.
They will say the lunch hall and corridors are crowded or that there are only enough science lab desks for 1 between 2 already.
The counter to much of this is to ask for current figures for children in each year group at the school. Assuming some years groups are over PAN (published admission number) you can say that they are already coping well with these numbers in other year groups.
You can look at Ofsted – if it says pupils move sensibly and safely between lessons (a lot comment on this kind of thing) then that shows the corridors aren’t perhaps the mad scrum they describe
You can look at GCSE results – if the results are improving year on year despite higher numbers in each year group than planned this shows the yare coping.

When you get the school’s argument, usually (unless you are the victim of an huge admissions admin error) you are not looking to blow it out of the water, just to chip away at it enough to make it a bit weaker and your own case stronger in comparison . Afterall that is how an appeal is one – the side who presents the strongest case when they are (usually) finely balanced wins. You don’t need to smash apart every comment they make especially as some of them will be fair points. Just show there is more wriggle room than the school might like to admit.

tiggytape Thu 27-Mar-14 22:41:39

won not one!

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