During the Covid-19 pandemic, much of the focus has been on shoring up existing delivery and, where possible, extending arrangements if it is not possible to re-procure.
With National Offer Day for primary school places having proceeded as scheduled on 16 April 2020, new regulations came into force on 24 April 2020, which relax some of the current requirements in the School Admissions Appeals Code 2010.
The School Admissions (England) (Coronavirus) (Appeals Arrangements) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 apply to appeals lodged on or after 24 April 2020, or those lodged before 24 April 2020 where the appeal was not fully determined by that date. The Regulations relax some of the current requirements in the School Admissions Appeals Code 2010 until 31 January 2021.
- Appeal panel hearings can take place in person, or with agreement from the school and parents, remotely (i.e. by telephone or video-conference) where all parties have access to the relevant means to do so and are fully able to make representations;
- Where a panel hearing cannot be held remotely, the appeal may be paper-based and determined on written submissions;
- Where one or more members of an appeal panel withdraws, the panel can continue to consider and determine the appeal as long as it consists of at least two remaining members; and
- Appeals deadlines may be amended – admissions authorities are to review their deadlines and set ‘reasonable’ new or revised deadlines (which must be at least 28 days from the date of notification of refusal).
The corresponding preliminary guidance emphasises the importance of carrying out the appeals process in a timely manner, with a view to minimising the potential for appealing families to be disadvantaged by the current public health protection measures and preventing term-time disruption for children whose appeals are upheld.
Requirements on clerking will not be relaxed.
Schools and academies should give consideration to how they might adapt their existing appeals procedure to ensure that the process remains fair and effective despite the current pandemic, and how panel members and clerks can be properly supported in carrying out their respective roles at this unusual time.
Should you require any advice regarding admissions appeals or other issues affecting schools, please contact our regulatory team.
The Prime Minister announced on Tuesday 22 September a new range of restrictions to protect us from the Covid crisis, some of which will apply to charities.
Following the end of the possession stay on 21 September, Helen Tucker & Rebecca Sembuuze from our housing litigation team discuss the most recent guidance, priority cases and what to expect in court.
Covid-19 has resulted, on the whole, in a marked co-operation between contracting authorities and their suppliers as everybody focuses on maintaining delivery as far as possible.
Employment Tribunal rules in favour of claimants in minimum wage case – has the interpretation of “working time” changed?
As we enter a recession, we have been here before, and a key question is what did we learn and how can we benefit from that learning?
It is anticipated that as lockdown restrictions ease, and particularly with children and young adults returning to education, cases of meningitis will start to rise.
As we continue to emerge from lockdown measures and deal with local measures and the short and long term economic impact of Covid-19, local authorities will need to re-assess how services will be delivered for years to come.
The Government first announced plans for a shared ownership right to buy in October 2019. At the time the sector raised concerns about the impact the plans would have on housing associations ability to borrow. An election and a pandemic later the Government announced, during the CIH Housing Festival last week, the return of the right to shared ownership as part of its Affordable Homes Programme (AHP).
Two final pieces of the possession jigsaw have been published on 15 September 2020. Mr Justice Knowles’ working group on possession proceedings has issued its guidance on the “overall arrangements” for possession proceedings.
To receive invitations to our events, as well as information and articles on legal issues and sector developments that are of interest to you, please sign up to Newsroom.