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conducting lawful admissions appeals during the COVID-19 outbreak

15 April 2020

Please note: the information contained in our legal updates are correct as of the original date of publication

Traditionally, the summer term is the busiest period for school admission appeals. Despite the current coronavirus outbreak, 2020 is expected to be no different.

However, strict social distancing measures mean that all admission authorities must adapt their processes to ensure that families who submit an appeal are not disadvantaged and are able to have their appeal heard by an independent panel in a fair and transparent manner.

To help schools and academies prepare for such appeals our experts have put together guidance on conducting admission appeal hearings during the outbreak and a series of support services. In line with the more relaxed regulation expected to be announced by the Department for Education on 24 April, the two main methods through which hearings should be conducted are:

  1. Paper
  2. Video or telephone conferencing.

To help you understand your statutory obligations and prepare for any admissions appeals that come your way we have scheduled a webinar on Friday 24 April at 2.30pm. During the webinar Partners Richard Freeth and Dai Durbridge will:

  • Highlight key elements of the School Admission Appeals Code 2012 and review any regulations and guidance from the Department for Education on conducting appeals during COVID-19.
  • Outline the process and main options for conducting appeals remotely.
  • Set out how you can ensure hearings conducted remotely or on paper are fair and effective.
  • Explain how we can help you prepare school staff, admission appeal clerks and panel members for the new processes.

Register for the webinar here.

training and events

14Oct

ISBL regional Conference Sheffield

Browne Jacobson’s Associate Sophie Jackson discusses the rise in growth of SEN and the impact of this on schools. Please note that this event was postponed from June 2020.

View event

4Mar

ISBL regional Conference Park Regis Hotel, 160 Broad St, Birmingham, B15 1DT

Browne Jacobson’s Associate Philip Wood discusses the rise in growth of SEN and the impact of this on schools. Please note that this event was postponed from May 2020.

View event

focus on...

Guides

Executive pay setting in school trusts

For many years now the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) have written to academy Chairs asking for justification and rationale on executive pay. School trusts have reached out to us for advice to help them meet their obligations within the Academies Financial Handbook.

View

150th Anniversary of State Education – Lessons Learned: reflections of 12 former Secretaries of State

Our on-demand video was hosted by the BBC’s Education Correspondent Branwen Jefferys with special guests including Baroness Nicky Morgan, Kenneth Clarke QC, Michael Gove, Justine Greening and Lord David Blunkett discussing past successes of education, the unintended consequences of past policy, and to envision what still remains to be done.

View

150th anniversary of State Education – looking back, moving forward

Watch our on-demand video where we joined the Secretary of State for Education, the Rt Hon Gavin Williamson, Dame Julia Cleverdon, Sir Michael Barber and the recently appointed President of the CBI Lord Karan Bilimoria to launch a year of celebration for those delivering education.

View

Upcoming webinars

Effective Board and Members meetings; Covid-19 and beyond

Education Partners Nick MacKenzie and Dominic Swift discuss the approach to members and board meetings in the ‘new normal’ considering the benefits of virtual meetings and discuss how in the longer-term, boards might combine virtual and in-person meetings to be more effective.

View

The content on this page is provided for the purposes of general interest and information. It contains only brief summaries of aspects of the subject matter and does not provide comprehensive statements of the law. It does not constitute legal advice and does not provide a substitute for it.

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