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Coronavirus (COVID-19): School admissions and independent school appeals panels

Primary national offer day

The Department for Education has confirmed that the offers of places for Reception and Year 3 for September 2020 will still take place on National Offer Day, Thursday 16 April 2020.

All procedures are on track to communicate offers to parents as planned.

Independent school appeal panels

We are closely monitoring government guidance and considering the possible impact of the coronavirus on school admission and exclusion appeals.

The Independent Appeal Panel is made up of trained, unpaid volunteers, with many of them isolating or shielding themselves, in line with Government advice.

There will be unavoidable delays to progressing and hearing school appeals this year due to the coronavirus outbreak as we have a primary focus on the wellbeing of our residents, Panel members, school communities and staff. 

The Department for Education has recently advised that it is not practical to go ahead with school appeals given the current restrictions and is reviewing nationally how appeals will be conducted during this period and timescales.

We expect to receive new guidance from the Department for Education which will clarify the positon.

Year 7 transition, Reception and Year 3 appeals for September 2020 and in-year transfer appeals

We will postpone the start of the Year 7 transition, Reception and Year 3 admission appeals which were due to start at the beginning of May 2020. 

Parents wishing to appeal against a decision not to offer a place may request appeal papers, but please be aware that there will be a delay in appeals papers being sent out due to the current working arrangements.

Please be assured that they will be sent out at the earliest possible time. We will acknowledge your appeal but we will not be able to offer you an appeal hearing date at this time.

We will also postpone any in-year transfer admission appeals that were due to be held before the end of May 2020:

  • You may still submit your appeal form but please be aware that whilst we will acknowledge your appeal, we will not be able to offer you an appeal hearing date
  • Those parents and carers who have already submitted an appeal form will receive communication from us outlining the postponement of their appeal

As soon as we are in a position to start planning again for the commencement of school appeals, we will contact parents and carers who have submitted an appeal form and will update our website.

We understand that school appeals are very important to parents and carers and their families and we will provide a further update as soon as we can. We trust that all concerned will appreciate the exceptional circumstances in which we find ourselves, and our need to be guided by the Department for Education in these matters.

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