Appeal a decision

Before you appeal

You can only appeal for a place at the schools that you list on your application form.

There are three types of appeal:

  • for the September intake (held during late spring and summer)
  • for midyear applications (held within 30 school days of when we receive it)
  • for a child with an Education, Health and Care plan (contact your case worker)

You can get independent advice about school appeals from:

It is your responsibility to find out about your options for school transport.

We cannot process appeals for children with Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP).

Moving home

If you have moved house, you must send us proof of your new residency. If you did not meet the deadline for providing this proof, we may have used your old address. 

Your appeal panel will review details of your case at the time the decision was made.

Service personnel and crown servants

Different rules may apply for armed forces and crown servants.

How to appeal

We will tell you how to submit an appeal in your offer letter.

You must clearly state your reasons for your appeal and, if possible, provide any supporting evidence. 

You must put your child's name on anything you send us, so we know who it is for. You can submit more information later. If we do not receive it by the deadline, we may not consider it.

Timetable for offer dates and appeals

  Secondary schools Primary schools
National offer day 1 March 2021  16 April 2021
Deadline for an appeal to be received Noon 29 March 2021  Noon 17 May 2021 

We may blank out other people's faces or personal details on documents you send us.

We will hear appeals made after these deadlines but they may not be with others for that school.

Some schools organise their own appeals and may use different dates. Visit the school's website for more information.

Request a school appeal form

Grammar school appeals

If you wish to appeal your child's 11+ score, you need to show they should have met the required standard. You could send:

  • a school report
  • written work (artwork may not photocopy well)
  • a teacher or headteacher's supporting letter

If the school is full and your child did not qualify, you must show why your child should have qualified. If something happened that affected testing, you may send details and evidence.

If the school is full and the panel believe your child should have passed, it does not mean they will grant a place. The panel will consider the school's case and then decide. You will need to show that your case outweighs the school's case.

Sixth form appeals

For sixth form appeals, the parent, carer or young person can appeal. 

You must show that they or you can cope with the workload and were expected to reach the required standard.

What happens next?

We will acknowledge your appeal within five working days. If you we do not, call 01522 782030.

Our legal services team will set up an independent appeal panel. To contact them, email [email protected].

You will receive your appeal pack by post 14 calendar days before your appeal date. This can be waived to seven working days, if you wish, after you submit your appeal.

The pack will include:

  • the date, time and venue of your appeal
  • a letter to explain why your child did not get a place
  • the names of the panel members and clerk

We try to group all appeals for the same school together. They will be heard in office hours during school term time. 

Some schools organise their own appeals. We will tell you if this is the case when you appeal.

At the appeal

You do not need to attend your appeal, but we recommend that you do or send someone else.

You can bring someone with you (for example, a friend, relative or social worker).

You should bring all documents relating to your appeal on the day.

A person will be there to present the schools case. The clerk will take notes and advise about the law.

Factors are limited for infant class size appeals if there are 30 children in the class.

You must tell us if you need an interpreter. This service is free of charge.

Appeal decisions

An independent panel of three people will make the decision.

After the appeal has been heard, the clerk will tell you how and when you can receive the decision.

A letter will also be posted to you.

Complaints about appeals

If you are unhappy with the way the appeal hearing was conducted, you can complain to the Local Government Ombudsman.

The Ombudsman is unable to overturn a panel’s decision but may suggest a fresh appeal with a new panel and clerk.

Complaints about academy appeals need to be sent to the Education Funding Agency by:

  • emailing [email protected]
  • writing to Admission Appeal Complaints, Academies Central Unit, Education Funding and Skills Agency, Earlsdon Park, Butts Road, Coventry, CV1 3BH