Independent Appeals

Information about the appeals procedure.

How to make an Appeal – 2024 entry

You cannot make an Appeal until Kirklees (or your local authority) have offered places on 1 March 2024 for Heckmondwike Grammar School.

If your child has not met the standard or your child has met the standard but has not been offered a place (because the school is full) you may then appeal against the school’s decision. You can do this by completing the Appeal Registration Form .

The deadline for submitting an appeal is Friday 19 April 2024 at 4.00pm. Any supplementary evidence must be submitted by Friday 10 May 2024 at 4.00pm.

In 2024, appeals will be heard by an independent panel  in the week beginning 10 June 2024 and will be held in Heckmondwike. You will be given at least 10 days notice of the date and time. The panel will base its decision on the evidence you provide and on what you say at the appeal.

What kind of evidence might you collect?

Evidence from your child’s current school about current performance – which could include:

  • recent reports,
  • letters from class teachers or from their head teacher

Where relevant you should obtain any medical evidence which supports your case.  Remember that it is your responsibility to collect any evidence that you think will support your case.

The Governing Body’s Admissions Sub-Committee will also review all appeal cases to ensure that the admission procedures have been correctly followed. This is an informal process giving the governing body the opportunity to:

  • Review the procedures followed in the exam;
  • Review the procedures followed in offering places;
  • Review any written evidence provided by parents in support of their appeal;
  • Intercede if there has been any maladministration at the school;

The clerk will write to you informing you of the result of this review.

The Appeal Hearing

The independent panel will conduct the process as informally as possible.  The panel is made up of 3 or more people who are independent (of the school), with at least one from each of two categories:

  • Lay members – people without personal experience of the management or the provision of education
  • People with experience of education in the area

The panel has an independent clerk who does not play a part in the decision making process but is there to support the panel and keep records.

To ensure fairness the following procedures will be followed:

Who may attend?

  • Parents / Guardians
  • Family or friends to give support
  • Representatives to give support or to make the case; these may include a locally elected politician, or an employee of the local education authority such as an educational social worker, SEN adviser or learning mentor, provided that this will not lead to a conflict of interest.
  • Representatives of the school – they are there to answer questions and to put the school’s case – they are not part of the panel

Sons / daughters or other children should not be brought to the hearing.

You may choose not to attend and the panel will consider your written evidence.

Before the Hearing you will receive a copy of the school’s statement which will give reasons why your child has not been offered a place. The place to ask questions about this evidence is normally at the Appeal Hearing.

What happens at the Hearing?

The appeals panel must decide if the school’s admission criteria were properly followed and are legal according to the school admissions appeals code.

  1. The person making the appeal and the presenting officer for the school are invited in at the same time.
  2. The Chair of the panel makes introductions and explains the procedures to be followed.
  3. The representatives of the school state the reasons for not offering a place.
  4. You and the panel have the chance to ask questions of the school.
  5. You state your case
  6. The school representatives or the panel members may ask you questions
  7. The school representative sums up their case
  8. You may sum up your case
  9. The panel members may ask further questions. The Appeal Hearing is then concluded and the panel will deliberate in the absence of the parties and in the presence of the Clerk.

After the Hearing

  • The Panel make their decision and set out the reasons for that decision. This will normally be completed within 5 working days of the appeal hearing.
  • The Clerk is instructed to write to you and the school to communicate the decision and the grounds for the decision.
  • The decision of the Appeal Panel is final and binding on the school and you.

The Education Funding Agency’s (EFA) has a role in handling complaints from parents about independent appeal panels for admissions to academies. Parents should, however, be aware that the EFA can only review the process, not the decision made by the panel. An appeal against the decision not to admit would have to go through the courts. Anyone wishing to submit a complaint of maladministration by an independent appeal panel should: