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 Post subject: Ad Hoc appeal
PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2009 6:09 pm 
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I'm helping some good friends (the subject is DD's longest standing friend) out by checking their paperwork. On the face of it, their appeal is an open and shut case, I think.

It's an ad-hoc (out of normal appeal run) appeal for entry later than Y7 (immediate entry). DD passed 11+ with no tutoring back in Y6, but didn't get a high enough score. Went on waiting list, but didn't appeal. Went to local comp.

The school is a few over IAN, but can comfortably take up to 8 over IAN, and has said so in the docs. This is the only appeal I think in this batch.

So it sounds like an open and shut appeal case to me: Parents want a place, school happy to take the pupil, panel should say yes.

There is a slight hiccup. And the details are very, very confidential, have occured very recently and the appeal is very soon, and are in the DropBox for appeals, for consideration by the Mods. I'm of two minds as to how to advise - I'm aware that I very much want to get this one right!

Thanks

SurreyDad


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2009 7:02 pm 
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Hi, SurreyDad

Is this an own-admission authority school with its own appeals panel? Or is there any LA involvement?

Have they put forward no arguments at all for prejudice?

As the qualification is said to be still valid, I assume the appeal is for immediate entry into year 7? Or could it be year 8?
Edited - sorry, just noticed 'year 8' in the title. Do parents have it in writing that the qualification is still valid?

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2009 9:16 pm 
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Etienne wrote:
Is this an own-admission authority school with its own appeals panel?

Own Admission Authority, no arguments for prejudice.
Quote:
Do parents have it in writing that the qualification is still valid? [/color]

Not in writing as far as I know, certainly verbal, as that's why they've gone for an appeal, rather than a re-test - the school saying that she proved herself suitable by passing the 11+. From what I've heard (having been read the schools case over the 'phone), the school are supporting the appeal as much as they possibly can without actually writing in foot high letters "yes, we want to take this pupil" on the door of the appeal hearing room.

Thank you for taking your time, Etienne.

SurreyDad


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2009 10:34 pm 
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I think I'm reassured by those answers, SurreyDad, and tend to agree with you that it ought to be an open and shut case.

In one sense the particular difficulties the pupil is coping with at the moment should strengthen the parental case, and I'm a great believer in deploying all the available arguments (if they're strong ones), not least because appeals can be unpredictable.

I do understand your concern that mention of the current difficulties might lead the panel to conclude that the prejudice to the school will be significant in this particular case.

However, it seems to me that what the panel should be considering is whether the addition of an extra pupil would cause prejudice - not whether the addition of this particular pupil (in the light of current circumstances that you have explained privately) would cause prejudice. According to the Code of Practice, the school's case is "how admission of an additional child would cause prejudice to the provision of efficient education or use of resources". Whether this is a distinction that every appeals panel will make is another matter!

My hope is that parents will win at stage one. I would ask for confirmation that the test to be applied is whether the admission of an additional child would cause prejudice (and check that the clerk is recording the answer). I would then draw attention to the fact that the school is not putting forward any arguments for prejudice.

There is a danger that, under questioning from the panel, the school might get drawn into making a case for prejudice. If so, parents should point out that arguments are being introduced that do not appear in the written case. This doesn't automatically prevent the panel taking new points into consideration, but in this situation they should at least ask the parents whether they need time to consider the new information.

If the case gets as far as stage two, I personally would make some oblique reference to concerns about the impact on the child, without necessarily going into all the details, but on balance I think I agree with you that they already have a strong enough case. However, I would advise them to keep their options open as to what they say at the hearing - depending on whether the school gets drawn into making a stronger stage 1 case for prejudice than anticipated.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2009 11:24 pm 
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Thanks, Etienne.

Exactly what I thought, but put so much better than I could.

I'll pass that on to my friends.

SurreyDad


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