If your child is refused a place at any school, you have the right to appeal to an independent school appeals panel. This applies where the school is community controlled, a faith school or an academy.

How to appeal

If your child is refused a place at any school, you will receive a letter from us explaining why you have been refused and giving details of how to appeal.

If you decide to appeal against the decision, the request must be made in writing stating your child’s details and giving your reasons. If the refusal is regarding an in year transfer, your appeal can be an email or a letter including your reasons which should be sent to us at schooladmissions@warrington.gov.uk

Normal Rounds Admissions (Reception and Y7 for September 2023)

If your child has been refused a place at one of your preferred schools in the normal admission round (reception or year 7 for September 2023) you must complete an appeal form (one form per school) stating your reasons why you would like your child to attend this school.

Please return completed forms to:

Schools Admissions
East Annexe
Town Hall
Sankey Street

or you can email a scanned copy to our admissions team schooladmissions@warrington.gov.uk before Wednesday 29 March 2023 for Secondary forms and 17 May 2023 for Primary forms.

We cannot accept photographs of completed appeals forms as the information on the form has to be reproduced.

If you are not a Warrington resident and have been refused a place at a Warrington school, you can request information on how places were allocated. Email the admissions team schooladmissions@warrington.gov.uk and include your child’s name and date of birth in any request.

Timetable for school appeals

Year 7 admissions September 2023 (Normal rounds) should be appealed by 29 March 2023 and will be heard within forty schools days of receipt. Appeals received after 29 March will also be heard within forty school days of receipt.

Reception class admissions September 2023 (Normal rounds) should be appealed by 17 May 2023 and will be heard within forty schools days of receipt. Appeals received after 17 May will also be heard within forty schools days of receipt.

In year transfer admissions appeals will be heard within thirty school days.

The appeal hearing

You will be contacted ten school days prior to the appeal date to outline the process and the options available, with paperwork being dispatched around five working days in advance of the hearing.

It is expected that all additional evidence in relation to an appeal is submitted five school days before the date of the appeal. This is to try and ensure that all parties have time to consider the additional evidence

The panel

The appeals panel will be made up of three to five members who fall into these categories:

  1. At least one lay member who has no personal experience of management in schools
  2. At least one member who has personal experience in education

There will also be a clerk to the panel who will advise on any legal issues if necessary and will note the proceedings. The clerk remains with the panel whilst making a decision but has no part in the decision making.

A representative from the council (for all community schools appeals) or the school’s governing body/Academy trust (for all church aided and academy schools appeals) will also be there to state their reasons for refusal.

Infant class size appeals

The Schools Standards and Framework Act 1998 require that from September 2001 no five, six or seven year old in an infant class at a maintained school will be in a class of more than 30 pupils.  If your preference for a primary school is refused because the class has reached its statutory limit, you will be given the right of appeal but this category of appeal can only be upheld if an appeal panel is satisfied:-

  1. that the decision was not one which a reasonable admission authority would make in the circumstances of the case; or
  2. that the child would have been offered a place if the admission arrangements had been properly implemented.

More information on infant class size appeals:

The panel’s decision

The panel members will make their decision in private and you and the school will be informed of their decision by letter within five school days. For ‘batch’ appeals in relation to the normal round of admission, it will be five school days after the final appeal for the school is heard.

The decision of the panel is final and binding between the council, the school and yourself.

Successful appeal

If your appeal is successful your child will be awarded a place at the preferred school and you will be asked to contact the school to arrange a start date.

Unsuccessful appeal

If your appeal is unsuccessful no further appeal can be made for the same school in the same year group unless there has been a material change of your or the school's circumstances.

If you lose the appeal and you think your case has been dealt with unfairly or unlawfully, you have the right to contact the Local Government Ombudsman

We will be able to give you information on other local schools with available places.