School placing requests

Placing request decisions - May 2020

This page provides guidance for parents and guardians to make an informed decision when considering ‘What to do Next’ following a placing request refusal.  

The ground(s) of refusal of your placing request application will have been detailed in your refusal letter. It also provides information for parents and guardians regarding making an appeal against a placing request refusal. This information is for guidance only and it is suggested that you should obtain your own independent legal advice should you wish to appeal. The decisions for all placing request applications are made in accordance with South Lanarkshire Council’s policy for admissions to mainstream education.  

The policy details the consideration given to granting places before placing requests are considered; the priority categories given to placing requests; the arrangements where there is more than one applicant in any one particular category than places remaining and the grounds for refusal. Please note:

As you will be aware, Coronavirus is causing unprecedented disruption across the world, and it is having a significant impact on the services provided by our schools and Central Education Service. This means that we have a number of staff working from home and small number based in the office. To ensure the continued safety of our school and central support staff we would ask that under no circumstances should you appear in person at the school or at Education Headquarters.  All enquiries should be emailed to edsuppserv.helpline@southlanarkshire.gov.uk.

Your options

Following a placing request refusal you may wish to consider the following options:

1. Enrol your child in their catchment school or remain in your current school if your child currently attends a South Lanarkshire school.  

This can be done while a placing request appeal is ongoing. Should places become available in the school of your choice from your original placing request application before the first day of the August term, your original placing request will continue to be considered. If you wish to re-enrol at your catchment school, please confirm your request by emailing  edsuppserv.helpline@southlanarkshire.gov.uk.  You will be provided with confirmation of your request in due course.  We would encourage you to enrol in your catchment school even if you are thinking about other options as it will secure a place until further options are explored, including the appeal process.  Although you may choose to enrol your child in the catchment school, we will continue to consider your placing request application should circumstances change in the requested school, until the first day of the August term.  If you do not wish your application to be considered at this stage you can request it to be withdrawn by writing to:

There may be a possibility that the catchment school no longer has any space and we will inform you of this. If the school is full, we will carry out the enrolment in the normal manner (the child’s birth certificate and two proofs of residency are required and copies of these (scans or photographs) must be emailed to Education Resources at edsuppserv.helpline@southlanarkshire.gov.uk)

Education Resources will then identify the next nearest school with spaces available and the pupil will remain on the waiting list for their catchment school.  If you do not want your child to attend the next nearest school identified you are required to submit a further placing request to another school.  If you choose this option you will not remain on the waiting list for your catchment school.  Free school transport will be arranged for the next nearest school should it be more than one mile (primary) or two miles (secondary) from your home address.  This will cease when a space becomes available in your catchment school.

2. Submit a further placing request for another school.

Only one placing request will be considered at any time.  If you choose to submit another placing request your original application will no longer be considered.  Only one application will be considered at any time.  Placing request applications received after 15 March for a start at the beginning of the August term which were refused will be included in a review that takes place every 10 working days until the start of term in August.  This review will include those making a further application following a refusal decision as well as applications that have previously been refused and any new applications received. 

If a placing request application is submitted for a start date after the commencement of the August term we will let you know our decision within three months of receiving your application. 

3. Refer the decision taken to an appeal committee set up by the Council in terms of Section 28C of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980.

If you choose to refer the decision to an appeal committee a further placing request cannot be submitted while this process is ongoing.  Please note you can enrol your child in their catchment school while the placing request appeal process is ongoing. 

4.  Further enquiries?

If you have any further enquiries please email edsuppserv.helpline@southlanarkshire.gov.uk

Placing request appeals process

Changes to the appeals process with regards to the Coronavirus Pandemic

The appeal committee procedures are likely to change this year. The Scottish Government recently issued the Education (Miscellaneous Amendments) (Coronavirus) (Scotland) Regulations 2020 which  temporarily allows a change in the procedures. While social distancing restrictions are in force, the Education Appeal Committee cannot meet in its usual format. If you appeal you will be provided with a copy of the procedures that will be in place for placing request appeals this year.

If you lodge an appeal you will receive an acknowledgement within 28 days of receipt.    A hearing on a reference shall be held by an appeal committee within the period of three months of the date of receipt by them of the reference or in the event of the committee being unable owing to circumstances beyond their control to convene within that period, as soon as reasonably practicable after the expiry of that period.

How do I appeal the decision of Education Resources?

To make an appeal, complete the appeal proforma enclosed with your letter and email it to educationappeals@southlanarkshire.gov.uk or send it to the Head of Administration and Legal Services, Floor 11, Council Offices, Almada Street, Hamilton ML3 0AA to be received there within 28 days of you receiving notification of the decision in respect of the placing request application.  

Please note that only one appeal to the appeal committee can be made for the same school in any period of 12 months in respect of any one child, other than where the Council reconsidered the request after a review and refuse it a second time.