Pleased to see that no one tried to put any obstacles in the way of your getting access to the pdf file.
As we speculated further above, it does include the school's response to your complaint, and a copy of their case for prejudice.
By referring to the case for prejudice as an "undated letter to you", the EFA caused some confusion. It would have made more sense if they had referred to the "statement sent to all appellants".
The EFA have already ruled that the clerk's decision letter was non-compliant.
In his letter of 2nd December the EFA Complaints Co-ordinator wrote that, apart from the decision letter, "the process was followed correctly
- and yet there appear to be two
further breaches of the Code (which you could not raise earlier because of the school's unwillingness to provide you with a copy of the clerk's notes):1)
the clerk wrote:
Noted offer of ...... school which was 1st choice on CAF form
it was 'never mentioned', during the appeal hearing
In that case they had probably asked the LA for details, but - wherever they got the information from - this should have been disclosed in the case papers, and you would then have had an opportunity to explain.2)
the clerk wrote:
Considered education of all pupils in the school as well as other appeal cases [my emphasis]
As I've mentioned previously, this looks like a serious breach of section 3.9 of the Code because the clerk has recorded that they "considered other appeal cases
" when deciding that your case did not outweigh the prejudice to the school.
Section 3.9 does go on to say
Having eventually had sight of the clerk's notes, I don't think there is a case for arguing that academic evidence and extenuating circumstances weren't considered.
In addition to recording the long list of documents provided, the notes state:
"Panel considered school reports and school letters, plus other documentation provided"
"Panel reread documentation provided"
"Considered all documents provided, plus verbal case"
I'm afraid we cannot show that the panel failed to consider the evidence. We may well disagree with their judgement - but that is not grounds for a complaint.
Please let me know if you would like to raise the apparent failure of the EFA to spot the two probable breaches of the Code which I have set out above, and I will send you the link to a DfE complaints form.
Some words of caution:
a) This is an internal procedure in which someone else from the EFA will review the handling of your complaint.
b) Even if they were to agree that the Code has been breached, they might claim that the final decision was not affected (so no injustice).
However, as I've said before, this particular complaints procedure seems to be relatively quick, so you have little to lose by going ahead and seeing what happens.