check the success rate for appeals at the school in question
How would we do this please?
I can't see anyone else being able to explain this and answer detailed questions. It's taken me three daughters and ten years to get my head around it.
I'm afraid the more complex the case, the more difficult it is for the panel to hear it 'in absentia'.
Would a letter along the lines I have just explained above be suitable and plausible in any way? Or better to wait?
There are two separate issues here.
By "predicament" I was thinking of the fact that you cannot be in two places at once.
Astonishingly (for parents on this forum!), there are appellants who forget to turn up for their appeal, or just can't be bothered to attend!
You don't want the panel to draw any adverse conclusion from your absence.
You may have explained your circumstances to someone on the phone, but there's no guarantee this information will be passed on to the panel.
Best to send a very apologetic letter during the week leading up to the appeal. Explain that there are circumstances completely outside your control. Point out that you have asked if an alternative date might be available (not least because the case is complex, and you appreciate that the panel may well have questions for you), but have been told this is not possible. Add that you are extremely sorry to be in this situation, and that absolutely no discourtesy to the panel is intended.
The second issue is your case itself. Assuming you've already sent in a written submission, it's mainly a question of whether or not you need to add
anything, bearing in mind that you will not have the opportunity to present your case in person. If so, check the deadline by which additional evidence/information must be submitted.
Anything you submit in writing needs to be crystal clear
, because the panel will obviously have no opportunity to clarify anything with you.
Is there far more pressure on places this year than before?
Sorry - I can't say.