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 Post subject: Appeal help?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 9:05 pm 
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Dear All,
Scenario; daughter passes 11+. Not offered place at Grammar as not first preference school. Receive phone call from Head in person day after results informing us unfilled places exist following first preference round, and saying that if we put daughter's name on waiting list, she would be eligible for one of unfilled places. Daughter delighted. We put name on waiting list. Letter offering place failed to materialise. Head finally admits after a month that the unfilled places he had spoken of to us, were in fact dependent on others "dropping-out", and fewer than he expected dropped out. Ergo no place after all. Daughter deeply upset and disappointed. We'd be very grateful for forum opinions as to how we should approach an appeal. I would add that we have recently heard of another child who had been in exactly the same position and who has appealed successfully. Obviously we are hoping to contact these people Thanks


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 9:59 am 
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Can you give us more details as the which part of the country you are in? Why was Grammar not put as first preference ...?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 6:53 pm 
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Guest55 wrote:
Can you give us more details as the which part of the country you are in? Why was Grammar not put as first preference ...?

We're in Gloucestershire and currently here we have the first preference system. We put the local comprehensive school as our first preference (it is an oversubscribed school therefore does not need to consider candidates that put it less than first preference), followed by the grammar schools. This is a very common practice particularly locally as we could not risk the place at the comprehensive school. On the 1st March we received the LEA allocation of school which was the comprehensive. We also received letters from the Grammar schools informing us that our daughter had passed the entrance test. In order to apply for a place at the Grammar schools, we were then invited to put her name on their waiting lists as there were places available at these schools following the first preference round. It was the next day to receiving the letters from the Grammar schools that one of the Heads telephoned us regarding unfilled places etc.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 7:56 pm 
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I would read the advice above in the 'stickies' -

By the way are you saying that if you put Grammar first and don't reach qualifying then the Comprehensive does NOT become your first choice?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:15 pm 
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That's right, unless we knew without any doubt that she would have passed (!) then we could not risk the place at the local Comprehensive. Only those children whose option on not passing would be the private sector put the Grammar first, the overwhelming majority put the Comp first followed by the Grammars.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:57 pm 
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Dear Molly

I think I would tell the panel, as calmly as possible, about the head's phone call.

Some panels might be sympathetic if they thought you had been unfairly treated. The problem, of course, is that no one can prove exactly what was said. There's a world of difference between the head offering a place, and saying "We usually have some unfilled vacancies, and if you put your name on the waiting list, you will be eligible / could well be eligible / might be eligible ,,,,,,,,"

It's not clear to me whether this is a foundation school handling its own appeals, or whether it will be a local authority panel.

If the head is not in attendance, I would be tempted respectfully to ask for an adjournment and to request the panel to seek confirmation of exactly what was said. The head will either confirm your version of the conversation [which could strengthen your position], or he won't .........

Assuming there has been no maladministration with regard to the admission arrangements, then the test to be applied is whether your reasons for requiring a place outweigh the prejudice to the school.

If you haven't already done so, then I would suggest reading section C of the Q&As (C2 deals with applying to an oversubscribed school).
www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/11plus-appeal ... nswers.php

Regards

_________________
Etienne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 11:48 am 
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Thank you for your reply. We've already looked through the 'Appeals' section closely and feel that section C ( oversubscribed school) is the section probably most relevant to us.
Regarding what was actually said to us, The Head contacted us and stated quite clearly that there were unfilled places, if we placed our daughters name upon the waiting list, she would be eligible for one of those unfilled places. He also contacted several other parents at my daughters school that same morning saying the same to us all. However we did not receive a letter, only a recorded message on our answerphone saying that our daughter was 'one of the next couple' on the list, it was only at this time that we were alerted to the fact that a place depended upon someone dropping out, this caveat was never added in the initial call to us. Had it been so, we would never have allowed our daughter to think that she would be going when there was uncertainty regarding a place.
We have complained both to the Governing body and the Director of Education and there are a series of emails/letters regarding our situation.It is our intention to take these to the appeal panel in order that they might understand the background to our case. Does this seem reasonable and appropriate to do so?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 1:08 pm 
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Dear Molly

The fact that other parents received the same message, and that you have copies of your complaint to the governors and director of education, should strengthen your position. I certainly think it is appropriate to produce these copies at an appeal.

If this is an LA school, then the LA could argue that, as the admission authority, it has done nothing wrong. However, you could point out that the headteacher was clearly acting as "an officer of the authority".

The first test to be applied by the panel is: Has the admission authority done something wrong in its admission arrangements as a result of which you have been denied a place to which you would otherwise have been entitled?

Best not to have all your eggs in the one basket :D. Be prepared for the second test, which I mentioned before: Do your reasons for requiring a place outweigh the prejudice to the school of having to accept an extra pupil?

Good luck

_________________
Etienne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 5:51 pm 
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Apologies but I forgot to mention earlier that the school is question is a Foundation school. What role therefore does the LEA take in this case?


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 Post subject: Glos appeal
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 5:59 pm 
I am a bit puzzled, or I have I missed something here.

Molly mentions the 1st round in March which is fine to that point.
I thought at this juncture you either accepted the first offered school or told the LEA that you wished to be considered for another school.

Cannot remember the exact date, seems like ages ago, but by the end of March early April during the second round of allocations, parents were then informed whether they had been given thier second choice, if not the appeal stage kicked in. Appeals were then heard in May/June.

I would have thought that Molly's daughter would have gone to appeal at this stage. But depending on the choice of grammar school, I would have thought that if she had a high enough pass mark she would have been offered her grammar school at the end of the 2nd round of allocations.

What grammar school are we talking about here?


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