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 Post subject: Ombudsman's decision
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:18 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 1:22 pm
Posts: 36
Location: Lincolnshire
Hi, quick recap on my situation re:appeals. We went to appeal at the end of April (six months after getting son's 11+ result). Our appeal was unsuccessful and we were left with a dissatisfied feeling with particular reference to one panel member's questions. I did post these under the heading 'Silliest questions asked at an appeal competition' - does your son have a mobile phone? do you have a lock on your computer? what would you do if your son came home and told you a nother child at school had been carrying a knife? does he go to the methodist chapel in your village? is he a member of the boy's scouts?

A couple of weeks after our appeal I decided to take our concerns to the ombudsman not really believing that anything would come of it, but i had started to wonder whether the answers to these questions were taken into consideration pror to a decision being made (thinking it would be ludicrous if they had been). I also expressed concern that the clerk on the panel was also clerk of governors. The school in question is a boys grammar school in Grantham Lincs and it's a foundation school which i felt was another important reason to go the ombudsman.

The Ombudman's decision came through at the end of July and he did find that maladministration had occurred. The answers to the above questions had been taken into account before a decision was reached and it was ackowledge that these questions were not related to the school's admission crtiteria. he also agreed that the clerk to the appeals panel should be totally independant from the school and that the panel members should receive training. We were offered a reappeal as were ALL appellants who had been interviewd by the same panel!!! The new appeal was going to be conducted by the LEA - so it's brilliant that they are now aware of the school. The new appeal dates were finally set (heard in mid August) for 6th September. We did eventually decide not to go to our reappeal ( thought it too unsetling as son would have already started new school and we were happy with this school)but i was informed that at least three other couples had expressed interest so i hope someone got through. Hopefully those having to go to appeal next year will be dealt with in a more professional manner.

Many thanks again to this site for all the support I've received over the past year - I'm finally putting the whole experience behind me.

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Louise


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:31 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2007 12:18 am
Posts: 4083
We11 done, Louise!!
for taking on the system for the benefit of a11 who are going to appeal next year!

You are truly a STAR!
Image
Good Luck and Best Wishes to you and your son.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:58 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8204
Location: Buckinghamshire
Wow Louise! I am so impressed with you! :D

There are plenty of parents on the site who have just gone to an appeal, grumbled about the fairness of some of the questions and then let it rest.

By taking your case to the Ombudsman you will have made a tremendous difference to the fairness of Appeal hearings for this school for other parents in future.

Very well done, and especially for your wisdom in always putting your son's best interests first, rather than letting the "mission" cloud your judgement.

I hope your son is very happy at his school.

Best wishes
Sally-Anne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:00 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2007 9:29 pm
Posts: 2049
Location: Wirral
Well done Louise!

Hopefully due to your actions others will not have to put up with what you did this year.

Good for you! With parents like you standing up for what’s right it will hopefully make what is already a nerve racking time a little easier..

From another Appeal Mum Thank you!

AM


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:07 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 7061
Thanks for the update, Louise.

For those who missed the original post, here is a link:
www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/forum/11plus/ ... php?t=2567

The "system", on the whole, works well, but this was clearly a "rogue panel".

The questions asked by the panel member were foolish and unacceptable, and both the chairman and the clerk failed abysmally in their duty to intervene.

Everyone will respect the decision you have made regarding your own son, Louise, but will appreciate the stand you have taken against this foundation school panel, and your efforts to improve things for others.

I hope your son will be very happy in his new school.

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Etienne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2005 3:47 pm
Posts: 1348
Location: Berks,Bucks
Brilliant, Louise.

Well done for fighting for what you thought was right and it's really good that you succeeded.
It a fantastic example for all of us, and really helpful for the parents that will have to go though the same system in the future.

Catherine


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 1:36 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:49 pm
Posts: 1647
Location: berkshire
I am so impressed at the effort you have gone through to ensure future appeals are conducted in a fair manner. The fact that you have also considered what is best for your child, by turning down a fresh appeal, makes your perserverance even more remarkable. Well done!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11948
Louise - that's amazing!!

I hope the school are embarrassed ...


Every good wish to you and your child ...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:44 pm
Posts: 345
Louise,

You are amazing, Congratulations and well done.
On behalf of all Appeal parents and children

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 9:23 am 
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Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 8:03 pm
Posts: 1827
Location: Gloucestershire
It might also be worth contacting the local press - they'd like that kind of story to counter what is probably a huge amount of positive publicity from the school.

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Capers


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