Before you appeal
Appealing a school place decision should only be done if you have already applied:
- for a school place for the September intake and have been refused a place at a school.
- to move schools for an in-year place and have been refused a place at a school.
Appealing a school place is different from applying for a school place.
You can only appeal for a place at the schools you listed on your application form.
If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan and you are not happy with the school named on your plan, please get in touch with your caseworker.
You can get independent advice about school appeals from:
It is your responsibility to find out about your options for school transport if you have been offered a place at a school you didn't list on your application.
If you have moved house, you must send us proof of your new residency. We may have used your old address to process the application if you did not meet the deadline for providing this proof.
Your appeal panel will review the details of your case at the time the decision was made.
Service personnel and crown servants
Different rules may apply for the armed forces and crown servants.
How to appeal
There is a two-step process to appealing:
- Request a school appeal form using the link below.
- Fill in the school appeal form sent to you and submit it back to us.
Requesting a school appeal form is different from submitting a school appeal form. You must fill in the form we send you after you have asked for it so we can begin processing your appeal.
Most schools in Lincolnshire accept our appeal form. You must clearly state your reasons for your appeal on the form and 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 on if you need to.
You need to send any supporting evidence you wish to be considered in advance of the appeal hearing. We may blank out other people's faces or personal details on documents you send to us.
For schools that have their own appeal forms, you will need to send any supporting evidence directly to them.
Schools which have their own appeal forms and do not accept our appeal form are:
- Somercotes Academy
- Louth Academy
- Theddlethorpe Academy
- Sir Robert Pattinson Academy
- Caistor Grammar School
- Alford John Spendluffe
- Lincoln Priory LSST
- Grantham Priory Ruskin Academy
- Lincoln Priory City Academy
- Sleaford Carres Academy
- Boston Grammar School
- Boston High School
- Pembroke - A Priory Academy
- Louth King Edward VI Grammar School
To appeal to a school in another local authority, go to the school's website for information on how to do this.
Timetable for offer dates and appeals
National offer day
1 March 2024
16 April 2024
Deadline for an appeal to be received
28 March 2024
14 May 2024
Appeals will be heard after the appeal deadlines.
Schools that organise their own appeals may use different dates. Visit the school's website for more information.
Infant class size appeals
Where an infant class (Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) has 30 children already, panels are limited on what they can consider at an appeal.
Grammar school appeals
If you wish to appeal your child's 11+ score, you must show that they should have met the required standard. As evidence of this, you could send the following:
- 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 affected testing, you might wish to 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
The parent, carer or young person can appeal for sixth form appeals. Contact the school directly for more information.
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 that your appeal has been lodged within five working days. If we do not, please call 01522 782030.
Where we are not the admissions authority for the school you are appealing to, we will send the appeal forms to them. We will let you know when we send your appeal form to the school. We cannot let you know when your appeal will be.
Once your appeal date is confirmed, you will receive your appeal pack in the post 10 days before this date. The 10 days notice can be waived on your appeal form.
The pack will include the following:
- 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.
Appeals will be heard during office hours during school term time.
Some schools organise their own appeals and follow a different process. 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 you do or send someone else who can attend. If you attend yourself, you can bring someone with you, such as a friend, relative or social worker.
You should bring all the documents relating to your appeal on the day. Remember that you will need to send any supporting evidence beforehand.
The clerk will take notes and advise about the law during the appeal. A representative will be there to present the school’s case.
Factors that the panel can consider for infant class size appeals are limited if there are already 30 children in the class.
You must let us know if you require an interpreter on the day of the appeal. This service is free of charge.
After the appeal is heard, an independent panel will decide. They are not connected to the school or local authority in any way. The clerk will tell you how and when you will receive the decision. A letter confirming the decision will also be posted to you.
Complaints about appeals
If you are unhappy with how the appeal hearing was conducted, you can complain to the Local Government Ombudsman.
The Ombudsman cannot overturn a panel’s decision, but they may suggest a new appeal with a different panel and clerk.
Complaints about academy appeals need to be sent to the Education and Skills Funding Agency by:
- emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
- writing to Admission Appeal Complaints, Academies Central Unit, Education Funding and Skills Agency, Earlsdon Park, Butts Road, Coventry, CV1 3BH