Do I Need an Education Lawyer for a Schools Admissions Appeal?

Portrait of Emma Davies
Emma Davies
Senior Associate Lawyer, Education and Community Care

You don’t need a Lawyer to make a school admissions appeal, but getting legal advice from someone who specialises in Education Law will obviously have its benefits.

The school admissions appeal process is designed to be parent-friendly, but while this might be your first appeal, our Education Lawyers have years of experience in advising and representing parents when their child doesn’t get into their preferred school.

Our specialist Education Lawyers can work with you to ensure that your appeal is as strong as possible so that you and your child will be more likely to get the outcome you want. Get in touch today for legal advice on the School Admissions Appeals process.

Call us on 0808 239 9764 or request a callback

Why Your School Admissions Appeal Could Be Unsuccessful

While thousands of parents go through the school admissions appeal process every year, many of these appeals fail. This is partly because parents choose to appeal alone, and the majority don’t know all the ins and outs of the process, the factors that will be taken into account, the arguments most likely to support an appeal, or what they should say on the day of the Hearing.

And how could you, if this is the first time you’ve ever made an appeal to the Independent Appeal Panel (IAP)?

To read some expert advice from our Head of Public Law and Education, Imogen Jolley, see What to Do if Your Child Didn’t Get a Place at their Preferred School.

While Imogen talks you through the process step by step, it’s important to remember that this advice is only on the general appeals process and isn’t personalised to you and your child.

Some appeals are more complicated than others and this will differ from case to case.

Benefits of Using an Education Lawyer for an Appeal
When you contact one of our Education Lawyers for help, we will always tailor our legal advice to your personal situation and submit evidence that is specific to your child and the school. This is really important as an appeal will not succeed based on general information alone.

Here are some other benefits of using an Education Lawyer for a school admissions appeal:

We understand the appeals process 

There are several steps to making an appeal and the hearing involves 2 stages which might be on different days depending on how popular the school is. Our Education Lawyers have followed this process time and time again, so we know exactly what needs to be submitted and what is expected in each hearing.

We understand the temporary regulations

There are currently some changes to the appeal process due to Covid-19, which are due to last until September 2022. This includes the possibility of video hearings and changes to the appeal timetable.

We know how to prepare

Not only will you need to submit the appeals form, but you’ll also have to send more evidence before the hearing and it’s a good idea to prepare questions for the IAP. As you’ll only have one shot at the appeals process, we can make sure evidence is as strong and specific as possible, and the questions you ask will help your case.

We understand the deadlines involved

The hearing should be arranged as soon as possible, and should take place before the end of the academic year. That doesn’t give you much time to research and prepare when you may also be working and have other life commitments. This is our job, so we will dedicate the time to making sure the appeal you submit is as strong as possible.

We know what the Independent Appeals Panel want to hear

We often see that parents focus on how good the school is, but you really need to explain why your child needs to go there. The IAP also want to see an understanding of the School Admission Appeals Code and its requirements, which an Education Lawyer will have extensive knowledge of.

We’ll save you time and stress

The appeals process is time-consuming and can be emotionally draining for parents. We understand how difficult it can be and our main aim is always to take as much stress off you as possible and work in your child’s best interests for their education needs.

Some parents will just contact us for initial legal advice and others will ask their Education Lawyer to complete the appeals process from start to finish.

Either way, we are happy to offer our expertise to help you through this stressful time. We understand that your child’s school is vital to their learning and development and we will work hard to make sure they get into their preferred choice.

Contact us to discuss your School Admissions matter

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Simpson Millar Solicitors are a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Billingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Catterick, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester.