- Good interpersonal and communication skills.
- Good literacy and listening skills.
- Familiar with the principles of natural justice.
- Appreciation of each individual’s differing circumstances and backgrounds.
- Able to remain firm and calm.
- Have sound judgement.
- Ability to work with other Panel members.
- To ensure you are kept up-to-date by attending training events and by reading briefing papers.
- To be conversant and act in accordance with the DfECodes for School Admissions and School Admission Appeals.
- To have regard to the “Best practice Guidance on School Admission Appeals” which is produced by the Administrative Justice and Tribunals Council (AJTC) in association with the National Association of School Appeal Clerks.
- To act within the law as amended when hearing appeals and making decisions.
- To adhere to the law and Hertfordshire County Council's policies on confidentiality, data protection and equal opportunities.
- To ensure that the rules of natural justice are adhered to throughout.
These are members without personal experience in the management or the provision of education in any school (except as a school governor or in another voluntary capacity).
Experience in Education members
Those who have experience within education, are acquainted with educational conditions in the local authority area, or who are parents of registered pupils at school.
A person may not serve as a member of an appeal panel if they are:
a) a member of the local authority, which is the admission authority or in whose area the school in question is located;
b) a member or former member of the governing body of the school in question;
c) a person employed by the local authority or governing body of the school in question, other than as a teacher or as a teaching assistant;
d) a person who has, or at any time has had, any connection with the authority, school or any person in sub-paragraph c) above which might reasonably be taken to raise doubts about that person’s ability to act impartially;
e) a person who has not attended training required by the admission authority or persons arranging the appeal panel on their behalf.
The amount of time needed for this work varies depending on the level of commitment you wish to give.
Appeals take place all year round, although the peak months are between May and July. Each appeal hearing lasts around 40 minutes. Appeals are usually grouped together to create a full day of hearings starting at 9am and finishing at approximately 5pm.
Hearings should be held in a place that is reasonably accessible for parents, so the venue will normally be in the locality of the school that is the subject of the appeal.
Full training will be provided before you are appointed to an appeal panel.
This is voluntary work but members are entitled to claim for their travelling expenses, the cost of their lunch and in some instances loss of earnings.