Secondary School Admissions Appeals

National Offer Day for Secondary Schools is 1st March 2024. Read on or speak to our team to find out how we can help with appealing decisions about your child's admission.


Richard Nelson LLP’s education solicitors can help parents of secondary school children to appeal decisions about their child’s school admission. Get in touch with us using the form on this page or via our contact page to discuss your child’s situation.

Contact Us

Our Secondary School Admissions Appeal Packages

We can offer a number of packages tailored to the level of involvement you are happy with: it will be assumed that the notice to appeal will have been completed by the parents within the relevant timeframe.

Package A

Drafting written representations to be submitted to the Independent Appeal Panel, supported by reports or letters tacking both legal and social issues that demonstrate to the Panel why your child should attend their preferred school. Consideration would be given to the case submitted and an appropriate response or request for further information may then be drafted. £1,800 plus VAT.

Package B

Parents having drafted the written representations; we would attend the Independent Appeal Panel and present the case to the Panel. This can often be a two-stage approach, the school presenting its case to the Panel which can be considered by all parents appealing and then on a separate day, the parents presenting their case to the Panel privately. This package covers our attendance at both stages. £1,800 plus VAT.

Package C

Covers both A and B above, so we would prepare the written representations and represent you at the Independent Appeal Panel on your child’s case. £3,000 plus VAT.

Richard Nelson LLP also offers primary school admission appeals services.


Appealing Secondary School Admissions Decisions

Having considered the schools available when applying, many parents will appreciate that some schools are more popular than others and receive applications far in excess of the spaces available at the school.

If your child has missed out on their first choice of secondary school, you may be pleased to know that there is the chance to appeal this decision. The Appeal will be heard before an Independent Appeal Panel. You will receive information about how to appeal if you are not offered your first place. It will be sent out to you along with the offer that is made. You should follow the guidance and submit your appeal form within the timeframe set out.

Reasons to Consider an Appeal

Although the vast majority of pupils will be offered their preferred school, a significant number will be disappointed. If your child hasn’t received their first preference, this may cause your child and family difficulties when it comes to transport, or there may be implications for your child’s health and wellbeing. The proportion of secondary school applicants who received an offer of their first preference school increased by 1.3 percentage points to 82.2%. This was based on a 0.7% drop in the number of applicants, to just over 600,000.

Making a Successful Admissions Appeal

A successful appeal addresses a number of issues including whether the school admission arrangements have been complied with, whether they are lawful, and whether or not the over-subscription criteria have been applied fairly and correctly. Has the school applied the correct data to place your child in the correct over-subscription bracket?

Collating all this information and presenting it in a format that addresses the issues to be determined by the Independent Appeal Panel can seem overwhelming and daunting. As parents you may consider that there is a huge benefit in placing the matter in the hands of a professional, who understands how the process works and is able to present the strongest argument possible to the Panel, taking the pressure off you as a parent.

Specialist solicitors

Our multidisciplinary team is made up of specialists in a wide range of services, which means you'll always be represented by an expert in your area.

No-strings initial call

Get in touch to arrange a no-obligation, fully confidential call to discuss your case and work out if you want to continue.

Nationwide support

Speak to solicitors in one of our offices throughout England and Wales, or arrange calls and remote meetings.


rated on Reviews Logo

Proudly proving excellence

Our people

Our team of experts are here to help.


Stay in touch with Richard Nelson LLP.


Restrictive Covenants in Employment Contracts: Specialist Legal Guide


Update on employment payments and rates for 2024-2025


How many indecent image cases get dropped – and why?

1 of 3

Contact our legal advice specialists today.

Are you interested in School Admissions?

Use the form on the right to get in touch with our team and arrange an initial call to discuss your situation. We will use this no-obligation, fully confidential initial call to learn more about your case and help you understand your options going forward.

"*" indicates required fields