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 Post subject: Late examination appeal
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:42 pm 
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Hi I've read lots of the comments on here and meticulously been through the brilliant information provided on this site over and over however I'm still struggling to put together a basis of appeal... I have commented on here last week but in error was not in the appeals section as I was using my mobile phone (apologies Etienne).

(Background)
I missed the closing date for application as we were entering our DS for schools in two different LA areas, one of which closed a month before the other so I'd inadvertently missed the closing date by 6 hours for 2 of the schools we wanted. I called the school admissions immediately and was told this was common and our DS would get the opportunity to sit at a later date. Our DS sat the exam in March of this year we're extremely pleased to say DS passed for both schools with marks of 340 and 343 with the pass mark being 334. DS was very stressed on the build up to the exam and we are very proud our DS passed because DS was really nervous despite our support.

We received letters from both schools congratulating however both GS's are over subscribed and we were told to add to the waiting list, we live outside the catchment area although less than 3 miles away for both schools and an easy commute. Had we sat the initial exam I'm sure DS would have been given a place however DS is now potentially going to miss out due to an error on my part which is deeply regretful.

I contacted the school and was told we can not appeal on grounds of over subscription as we sat a late exam and therefore those are not sufficient grounds, is this correct or should we still appeal on this? Our HT is supporting our appeals and drafting a letter on academic ability which is also another point of our appeal as our DS passed the exam and we are aware that the pass rate was a lot lower this year compared to others and the both GS's excel in subjects our DS has shown an aptitude for.

We are thinking to base the appeal on the following grounds, over-subscription, academic ability with the schools being the best fit for our DS, we are unsure of allocation process however given our DS pass mark and proximity to the GS's we think it is likely he would have otherwise been given a place had he been allocated in the first round. Should we appeal on any other grounds?

Any advice or support anyone on this site could offer for our appeal would be very much appreciated, thank you for taking the time to read.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:54 pm 
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Welcome! :)

I chanced upon your original thread, but posts on appeals in a regional forum can easily get overlooked. :(

Quote:
I contacted the school and was told we can not appeal on grounds of over subscription as we sat a late exam and therefore those are not sufficient grounds
That makes no sense at all.

If they had said "In our opinion you haven't got a case for maladministration because we've done nothing wrong," I could perhaps understand.
Even so, it's not their place to tell you on what basis you can appeal, as I think ToadMum pointed out.

Perhaps they didn't understand what you were saying. Oversubscription/prejudice would be their case, not yours.
Your case is that you have reasons for wanting a place that are sufficient to outweigh any prejudice to the school.

Quote:
should we still appeal on this?
If you have reasons for wanting a place at this particular school, yes! This is the only possible ground I can see for appealing.
http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/appeal ... -school#c2

Quote:
Our HT is supporting our appeals and drafting a letter on academic ability which is also another point of our appeal as our DS passed the exam and we are aware that the pass rate was a lot lower this year compared to others and the both GS's excel in subjects our DS has shown an aptitude for.
Good - so long as the head focuses on why this particular school would be the right school, rather than on general academic ability, or suitability for a grammar school education, which has already been established through the 11+.

I hope the school realises how important their choice of words can be.
"We very strongly support" or "We support wholeheartedly and without the slightest reservation" is much better than a lukewarm "We support"!

Quote:
We are thinking to base the appeal on the following grounds, over-subscription,
You mean "reasons for wanting a place at this particular school".

Quote:
academic ability with the schools being the best fit for our DS,
"General academic ability" - no, as it's not an issue.
"Best fit for your DS" - yes, but this comes under "reasons for wanting a place at this particular school".

Quote:
we are unsure of allocation process however given our DS pass mark and proximity to the GS's we think it is likely he would have otherwise been given a place had he been allocated in the first round. Should we appeal on any other grounds?
No.

Tactically it's good to acknowledge that the mistake was yours, and that the school has done absolutely nothing wrong, and all you can now do is throw yourself on the mercy of the appeal panel. This isn't in any way grounds for an appeal, but if you shoulder all the blame, as you clearly do, it might elicit some sympathy!

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 12:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2018 3:19 pm
Posts: 7
Thank you Etienne,

I would just like to say a huge thank you to yourself and the other administrators of this site, the information found here along with the support & advice of the forum has been exceptional. We had sat 2 of the 3 appeal panels for our DS as none of the preferred schools were offered, we were unsuccessful with the first appeal to the LA school due to distance and more than likely our case not being as well prepared as it should have been. However upon receiving the notice of unsuccessful appeal I returned back to your forum and began to trawl thought the site and posts from other parents to put together a stronger case. Along with your advice regarding "best fit" and using the advice and templates of how to word our case to the panel, I wrote a statement which I read out to the appeal panel for the Grammar school which was very daunting (3 panel members, 1 chair, 1 clerk and 2 representatives from the GS). I'm very delighted to say our appeal has been upheld and our Son will be attending his preferred GS in September.

For all the other concerned parents due to sit before the appeals panel I would just like to say I know it is extremely daunting & stressful as the education of your child hangs in the balance, you have just as great a chance as any regardless of how strong the schools case may seem. The GS we appealed had a very strong case against any further admissions and it was very stressful leading up to the appeal, as long as you do your due diligence and leverage the support and information found here to structure your case and reasons for appeal I'm sure you will have the best chance of success, good luck to all! I found it best to write my appeal and read it out to the panel to avoid missing anything which I felt important to the appeal, had I tried to do it without this I most likely would have missed things out due to nerves.

Thanks again for all who have posted their experiences and responded to my posts!

Regards

A happy parent


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 6:00 pm 
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Quote:
The GS we appealed had a very strong case against any further admissions
Well done, Rhys. Wonderful news! :D

To win in such circumstances was a remarkable achievement.

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