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Friday, 03 January 2014 00:00

Kent and Medway Reception and Junior School Appeal outcomes for 2013

The tables further down this article show the overall 2013 Reception Class and Junior School Appeal outcomes for Kent and Medway primary schools who used KCC or Medway Council Appeal Panels (the large majority). Foundation, Free, and Voluntary Aided schools, together with academies are able to use Independent Appeal Panels from other providers or, in the case of Kent schools can also buy into KCC organised Panels. I do not have data for other primary appeal panels, merely a sense that they operate to a similar or even tougher standard. 

Appeals for Reception classes in infant and primary schools are governed by Infant Class Legislation (ICL), but in any case are only needed if the school is oversubscribed, when some applicants will have been turned down. Unless the school is full, no child can be rejected. You will find more information about primary school appeals here. The bottom line is that in Kent, just 3.5% of Reception Class  appeals were upheld where Infant Class Legislation applies, in Medway where ICL applies in all but two schools, the proportion is 4.5%. 

For Junior Schools in Kent, where ICL does not apply, the figures are much more positive, with 31% of appeals being successful. In Medway both appeals were successful!.....

In appeals where Infant Class Legislation applies, success will only be achieved in exceptional cases, or where there is an error in the award of places, unless you encounter a very sympathetic Panel which is prepared to ignore the regulations they are obliged to follow. Acceptable exceptional circumstances are very rare indeed, and in my opinion won't include transport difficulties or impossibilities, parental working patterns, most medical issues which affect parents or children(these should have been considered as part of the application procedure if acceptable), problems with other families, etc., so chances of winning on these grounds could almost be described as remote.  However, it is not for me to rule on these matters, this is purely for the Independent Appeal Panel, within the laid down rules.   I have taken into account in the figures below the large number of families in Kent and Medway who have withdrawn from their appeal, many or most upon seeing the paperwork that explains the hurdles they have to overcome to win an appeal. Some 30 children who had gone to appeal were offered places from the waiting lists in Kent, before the appeal, 25 in Medway as others holding places dropped out.

To put it into context, 263 of Kent's 421 primary schools were oversubscribed,  with appeals being spread over 154 of them, most schools attracting just one appeal. Highest numbers of appeals where ICL applied were at: Herne CofE Infants (13);  Thurnham CofE Infants (13); Priory Infants, Ramsgate (12);  Swalecliffe Community Primary (12);  Holy Trinity CofE VA, Gravesend (11);  Slade Primary, Tonbridge (11); St Crispin's Community Infants, Westgate (10); Bishops Down, TW (9);  Sandgate Primary School, Folkestone (9); St Nicholas at Wade CEP (9). Between them, there were no successful appeals. I do not have individual figures for Medway schools,

Although I have little direct evidence of this (I know of two), some of the successful appeals will have occurred where the school has made an error in allocating places, others where fraud is proven for other successful applications, so the true figure of success is even smaller. 

Kent Primary School Appeal Outcomes 2013
Number of 
Place offered
before Appeal
Appeals where Infant
Class Legislation Applies
546 18 364 132 30
No ICL 86 22 48 12 4
Junior Schools 33 10 20 2 1


Medway Primary School Appeal Outcomes 2013
Number of 
Upheld Rejected
Place offered
before Appeal
Reception Class Appeals
 157  6  98  28  25
Junior Schools  6  2  0  0  4

Unsurprisingly, I support very few primary appeals; and only where I can see there is a chance of success. 





Last modified on Friday, 05 December 2014 23:13

1 comment

  • Comment Link Sunday, 20 July 2014 23:38 posted by Dilys Freeman

    Appealed for 3 schools unsuccessful in all, got interesting things to tell. Really thought we had strong case at cliffe woods primary or so we were told. Why is medway council letting down our children,
    It really is unfair that 1 child can receive their 1st preference yet another child can't even get their fourth.
    Living on Medway Gate is a definite disadvantage, you view 7 schools list 4 as preferences then get allocated the closest 1 with vacancies.
    Did'nt list this school. So wouldn't it seem obvious that this was not a school that we wanted our child to attend.
    Peter there is so much I would like to say but, I can't put it all down on here, wish I could have a conversation would love to shout about the unfairness of it all, and the poor education some of our children will have to endure. PETER: Whilst I have many criticisms of Medway the admission process is as fair as it can be, although inevitably some areas are less well served. As this article makes clear very few Reception appeals are won, although Cliffe Woods is an exception, although I would still be surprised if one went to Medway Gate. Feel free to shout at me by email off the record if you wish, especially if you feel the process has been applied unfairly.

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