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How to appeal for a school place ahead of secondary school offer day

Parents can appeal if their child is not offered a place at their first-choice primary school. (AFP via Getty Images)
Parents can appeal if their child is not offered a place at their first-choice primary school. (AFP via Getty Images)

Parents will find out if their children have been accepted to their chosen primary schools on Friday, March 1, as the moment often known amongst parents as ‘offer day’ finally arrives.

You don't need to do anything further if you are satisfied with the school that offers your child a place. When information regarding the school uniform, taster days, and summer start dates becomes available, the school will get in touch with you.

However, The Standard has previously revealed that over 10,000 London children have failed to get their first choice of primary school.

Should their child not be offered their first-choice school, parents are able to appeal.

Find out below what you need to know about the appeal process, with advice from Irwin Mitchell lawyers.

How to appeal‌ your child’s school offer

When you appeal your child’s school offer, you will be given 20 days to file any evidence.

First stage of appeal

During the first stage of the appeal, the panel will decide whether the admission arrangements complied with the law, and whether they were impartially and correctly applied.

The panel will then decide whether admitting more children would impact the efficiency of the school and its resources.

If the panel finds that the admission arrangements did not comply and that admitting more children would not impact the school, the panel must admit the child.

However, if the panel finds that the school did comply and/or admitting more children would impact the school, the appeal process will move to the second stage.

Second stage of appeal

In stage two, the panel will balance the impact on the school against the reason for the child to be admitted.

If it finds that the benefit to the child outweighs the impact on the school, the panel must admit the child.

Results should be given in writing within five working days of the appeal.

When should you appeal your child’s school offer?

Parents should be sure that appealing is the right thing to do. When considering appealing your child’s school offer, the following reasons can be taken into account.

  • Religion or difficult family circumstances

  • A special need or health issue

  • A particular aptitude in the school’s specialism

  • Transport issues

  • Emotional reasons, such as historic bullying