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School Admission Appeals - Are you interested in volunteering?

Schools and education

26 November 2021

Children with their hands up

West Northamptonshire Council is seeking volunteers to sit on Independent Appeal Panels who hear school admission appeals.

What is a school admission appeal?

Parents have a legal right to appeal against the decision of an admission authority to refuse their child a place at their preferred school. Appeals must be set out in writing, as must the response of the admission authority. 

The written submissions are then circulated ahead of an appeal hearing, with both parties being invited to attend and put their case in person to the Independent Appeal Panel.

What would be my role?

Your role as a panel member would be to read the case papers in advance of the hearing, actively participate in the appeal hearing process and help decide whether to uphold or dismiss the parent’s appeal.

The Independent Appeal Panel member

You should be sensitive to the concerns of parents and to the pressures on local schools. You will also need to be a good listener and have the ability to be objective and act impartially. 

We will provide you with training on the legal framework of the appeal process and local procedures. 

Service is voluntary, but you will be paid expenses to cover out of pocket expenses.

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Department for Education guidance allows for School appeal hearings to be held remotely. We are currently holding most School Appeal hearings via video conference. Training on virtual remote appeal hearings will be provided. 

If you are interested in serving the community in this way and would like an application form and further details sent to you, please contact Amanda Burns, West Northamptonshire Council School Appeals Service via e-mail: [email protected].

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