Statutory guidance

School admissions appeals code

Statutory guidance on how schools should organise and run their pupil admissions appeals.

Applies to England



This statutory guidance is for:

  • headteachers and school leaders
  • school staff
  • governing bodies
  • local authorities
  • admission authorities of maintained schools as defined in section 88(1) (a) and (b) of the School Standards and Framework Act (SSFA) 1998
  • schools adjudicators
  • admission appeal panels

It applies to:

It explains:

  • the statutory basis for the school admission appeals code
  • how schools should conduct appeal hearings with regard to:
    • constitution of appeal panels
    • reaching decisions on appeals
    • infant class size appeals
    • further appeals and complaints about appeals
  • appeals by governing bodies against local authority decisions to admit twice-excluded children
  • the role of the local government ombudsman
  • complaints about appeal panels

You should read it alongside the ‘School admissions code’.

We also have non-statutory advice on school admission appeals for:

  • parents and guardians
  • admission authorities
  • clerks and panel members
Published 1 February 2012
Last updated 30 September 2021 + show all updates
  1. Updated 'changes to school admission appeals due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic' to reflect that the temporary regulations have been extended until 30 September 2022. The appeals code has not been amended.

  2. Page updated as the temporary amendments to the admission appeals regulations, which were introduced due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, have been extended until 30 September 2021.

  3. Changes to the admission appeals regulations during the coronavirus outbreak have been extended until 30 September 2021.

  4. Added guidance about the changes to the admission appeals regulations during the coronavirus outbreak.

  5. First published.