Child Not Allocated a Preferred Grammar School Place?

Sarah Woosey
Partner, Education & Community Care Solicitor

Aside from a limited number of exceptions, Grammar Schools are the only schools in England and Wales that can admit children based on their academic abilities. If you have made an application for your child to attend a Grammar School, you’re already aware of the 11+ examinations that are used to decide if your child is considered to be of grammar school ability.

But, what happens if your child wasn’t offered a place?

Even if your child did perform to the required standard in their 11+, they may not be offered a place at the school. This is because there are not enough places available at that school. So, if you’ve not been offered a place because of the limit in numbers, you have no choice but to engage in the General Secondary School Admissions Appeal Process. But, even if your child didn’t pass the Grammar School entry exams, you still have the option to appeal.

For legal advice get in touch with our Education Lawyers.

Call us on 08002605010 or request a callback and we will help you.

Grammar School Internal Review Process

The Grammar School your child applied to may have an internal review process for any child who’s failed the 11+ examinations by a small margin. This review process has to be conducted fairly and equally to all children in this situation.

You should ask the school if they have an internal review process. You should also know that any internal review process has to comply with the Admissions Code. If the school does have an internal review process and you decide to appeal, this is the only information that would be considered by the Independent Appeal Panel when reaching their decision.

No Internal Review Process?

However, if the school doesn’t have an internal review process, then the Independent Appeal Panel has to initially decide if your child is of Grammar School ability. This involves looking at SAT results, previous school reports and any other relevant documents. If, as a result of all that information, they decide that your child is not of Grammar School ability, then the appeal would end there.

If, after consideration of the evidence, the Independent Appeal Panel decides that your child is of Grammar School ability, then the appeal would continue under the General Secondary School Admissions Appeal Process.

The General Secondary Admissions Appeal Process

Even if your child is not given a place at a Grammar school, you will still have to go through the same appeals process as everyone else.

This is the general Secondary Admissions Appeal process, but please do make sure you read the appeal information you’ve been sent with your offer letter.

Once you receive your decision offer, you’ll be given at least 20 school days to make your appeal from the date they send you your decision letter.

You’ll been given a deadline for submitting any information and evidence to help strengthen your appeal. Anything submitted after the deadline may not be considered at all and could cause delays.

They’ll send you a hearing date, with at least 10 days’ notice so you can make arrangements.

At the hearing, you’ll have a panel of 3 independent people who have to follow the school admissions appeals code.

They’ll explain why your application was turned down and you can tell the panel why you think your child should get their place.

They will make sure that the school admissions code has been followed and if it wasn’t, your appeal will be successful. Alternatively, if the reasons why your child should be given a place at their choice of school are more important than the school’s reasons, your appeal will be successful.

You should hear back with the decision within 5 days of the hearing.

How Simpson Millar Can Help You

Our Education Lawyers understand how upsetting it is when your child hasn’t not been offered a place at your preferred Grammar School.

We can help you understand if making an appeal is the right decision, giving you help and legal advice about the process and your chances of success.

Our specialist education law advisors can give you all the information you need on how best to approach an appeal and give you their insight into the process so you are well prepared about what to expect.

For legal advice call our Education Solicitors

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