Was just reading your piece in the appeals section and you say that the panel didnt really ask you any questions.
Just really wondering what you spoke about then, as I thought that was the whole point of the appeal?
Also, how long were you in there?
Appealing is partly when an independent panel gets chance to consider circumstances out of the ordinary.
A panel not asking questions, whilst unusual, could be because the documents sent in advance by the parents were so good and self explanatory that it's all that needs to be said i.e. "granny died 3 days before the 11+, the child had an illness that was likely to affect performance for 8 weeks, and was expected to get 3 level 5a's at SAT's (got 5b's in year 5)". Not much a panel would ask about there if proof was provided, but also nothing that the school could take into account in the normal admissions process.
The appeal is not just the 'on the day of judgement' event. We get sent the paperwork at least 2 weeks before from both sides - we read & thoroughly inwardly digest (and make notes). We do ask questions on the day (usually), partly to try & draw out any other evidence that may not be thought of as important - and I have known "I didn't think you'd be interested that my husband & I split up the week before the exam - surely that wouldn't have affected Julie's 11+" type of thing to come out!
Appeals tend to last 20 to 30 mins. Sometimes they over-run - over one hour when allocated 20 mins did cause chaos through the day until we had a couple of no-shows - but we want to hear everything the parents (and school) need to say - it's just once they've repeated themselves twice that our chair tried to pull things to a close - but I've also known 20 min appeals over in 5 mins (and just as successful as the long ones).