0370 270 6000

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

6Jul

New guidance on exclusions - what you need to know ON24 webinar platform

The department for Education is releasing new guidance on exclusions and suspensions, making changes to the behaviour, suspension and exclusion framework and guidance. Join us on 6 July as we explain the proposed changes and help you understand how they will affect you and your school.

View event

Focus on...

Legal updates

Keeping Children Safe in Education 2022: Online searches for shortlisted candidates

The two biggest changes in the new safeguarding guidance revolve around sourcing high quality governor and trustee training and the new requirement to carry out online searches for shortlisted candidates. This article focuses on how and when to carry out online searches. In the coming week we will follow up with everything you need to consider when sourcing high quality governor or trustee training.

View

Blogs

Judicial Review of school exclusion reconsideration dismissed on all grounds

The recent case of R (on the application of A Parent) v Governing Body of XYZ School [2022] EWHC 1146 (Admin) provides some welcome and reassuring guidance to governing boards on the exclusion reconsideration process.

View

Legal updates

Implementing school system reform – next steps

Following its publication of the White Paper at the end of March, the Department for Education (DfE) has shared an implementation framework focusing on its plans for “a stronger and fairer school system”.

View

Legal updates

Local authority academy conversion powers

A question we often get asked by schools is “can I be forced to become an academy?” The answer to that question to date has centred around whether a school is eligible for intervention and, primarily, its Ofsted’s grade.

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.

Mailing list sign up

Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up