My wife and I were recommended John Chard from our local council for our forthcoming free school admission appeal for our son, When the day came John arrived with a mountain of ammunition and proceeded in an extremely professional manner to put our case forward and point out areas where the school had failed to follow its published admissions policy. The outcome being our son was given a place…. my wife and I could not praise John enough and its our opinion that without him we would never have succeeded in our appeal. Thankyou John, best regards Mark and Nicola
Mark Evans on Tuesday, 27th October 2015
I contacted John Chard as I was one of a large number of appellants and I wanted to make sure I was in the best possible position. John went out of his way to ensure I had all the information I needed and guide me through the appeal process. Going through this process is highly emotive and stressful, but I felt with his help I was in the best possible position. If there are any elements of your appeal that you are unsure about, I highly recommend his service. We were successful in ours today!
Rowan Jones on Monday, 6th July 2015
Throughout the service that John provided to us and in all dialogue written or verbal, the advice given by John was extremely positive and had advice on every aspect of the Appeal. John’s in depth knowledge of the whole appeals subject matter is excellent, forget reading up on the websites (which can be misleading and contradictory during an appeal process), just engage John!
Richard Kemp on Sunday, 21st June 2015
When my son was declined a place at his preferred school it was a heart stopping moment. All of his friends had been accepted and I was faced with telling him that he had been allocated a different school, needless to say he was devastated. I promised him I would do everything I could to fight the decision but in truth I didn’t even know where to start. I called John to try and get a sense of what to do and felt better almost straight away, his knowledge and experience left me feeling that I could really get us into a position of strength and if we didn’t win our appeal, at least I would know I did all I could. John helped us to complete our statement and at this point we opted to upgrade and have him attend the hearing with us as we could see that there would be great value in this. The hearing day came and John carefully picked his way through the school’s case to such an extent that their decision was overturned without even needing to get into the individual hearings; all three children at the appeal got into the school as a result of his professionalism and diligent approach to the problem. I cannot recommend john enough, if you are in any doubt as to whether or not you would benefit from help, take it from me, you will! Thanks to John my son is now happy and looking forward to starting his new high school with all of his friends in September!
M Futter on Sunday, 21st June 2015
Thank You John. We got the good news today that our appeal has been upheld. It made a huge difference having you behind me to explain a lot of the legal stuff, helping with the statement preparation & explaining the procedure. Although I was stressed out of my mind, your calm help made sure I was well prepared and able to present my case with confidence. I’m not sure how I would have coped without you. Many Thanks
M. Harvey on Tuesday, 26th May 2015
I’m very pleased to recommend John’s services. During the hugely stressful and long process of appealing for a primary school place, John was a regular source of calm, experienced and practical advice. He didn’t sit on the fence as many advisors might, but said DO this, and DON’T do that. Our appeal statement was very impressive, and when it came to the hearing itself, we were so prepared it was actually embarrassing! We had answers for everything that was thrown at us, and many tricky questions in reply. We were successful, and our son is now very happy in his new school. Thank you John, your advice made all the difference.
Evan on Tuesday, 7th October 2014
“Calm, cool and collected” John Chard really came through for us on extremely short notice. We contacted him only one week before our appeal date (having just discovered him) and he was able to research and put together a well-reasoned argument for our appeal within just a few days, and even responded patiently to all of our emails and phone calls. He presented our case at the appeal itself and I’m grateful he did, because we won! He was reassuring and knowledgeable at the appeal, and I have no doubt that having him there made all the difference to the success of our appeal. We can’t thank him enough and my daughter is really looking forward to her first day at the school we wanted for her.
Halley Cohen on Monday, 22nd September 2014
I had 5 weeks to put together an appeal statement for a school appeal hearing to get my son into his preferred school at the beginning of September. I spent 3 of those weeks going round in circles not knowing what to do, what information to include and what evidence to gather; it was horrible, stressful and all the internet reading I was doing was not making it any clearer for my specific case. I even took a lot of time out of my own business to concentrate on the case but still had no real clue. I then contacted School Appeals.org.uk and spoke with John and he immediately gave me a sensible plan of the information I needed to gather. There we so many things that I would simply not have thought of and, with John’s help, I managed to put together an appeal statement that I was happy to present. …that was just the beginning… Once the local authority’s Statement came through John really went to work and helped me to tear it to shreds (challenging ALL the points that the authority was making using the information that they had supplied us in the first place: Genius!!). End Result: We won the appeal without even having to present our case, we simply challenged the rational and figures used by the local authority and the appeals panel ruled that the authority did not prove that accepting my son would be prejudicial to the school. Bottom Line: Get John’s help. Get it sooner rather than later and you won’t waste weeks stressing and spinning your wheels for nothing! Thank You John, your expertise and your easy attitude made all the difference!
Wai on Wednesday, 17th September 2014
Preparing and attending for a school appeal has been one of the most stressful obstacles we have faced, given it involves our child only adds further pressure from a personal aspect point of view. The best thing we did was contact John. Thankyou so much for the time and effort you put into helping us prepare our school appeal. On every occasion we contacted you via email/phone you were very helpful, and we found you to provide an excellent service. We would 100% recommend you going forward.
Mr & Mrs Sandhu on Monday, 14th October 2013
Our Daughter gaining a place at our chosen school is without a doubt thanks to the advice, guidance and support of John. Available for every telephone call and email he also gave us the confidence to know when we were right and the school wrong. We cannot recommend him highly enough. The process of the school appeal itself can be overwhelming to the lay person and having such honest, straightforward advice proved invaluable to us. Thank you John
Katherine and Ian Smith on Sunday, 11th August 2013
I spoke to John regarding my child’s appeal which was not infant class size and he was most helpful in helping me put my case together and talked to me about net capacity of schools which I was never aware about. John is friendly and really listened to me and gave me information relevant to my case which I then used at the appeal and managed to secure a place for my child, thank you.
Miss Kaur on Saturday, 20th July 2013
Winning our infant class size appeal was possibly the most stressful things we have ever had to deal with. Engaging John’s services was undoubtedly one of the contributing factors in our success. John’s experience and advice was invaluable in helping us to firstly understand and subsequently prepare our case to challenge the admission authority. Always available via phone or email we found having consulted with John we went into our appeal feeling we had done everything possible to give ourselves the best chance of success. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend John’s services to other parents.
Jo White on Friday, 19th July 2013
Having lived overseas for 8 years, we have just moved home and had to go through an appeal for our son’s primary school place. From the very first telephone call, John Chard was extremely helpful – clear, to the point and factual at all times. This clarity helped us build our case to a very strong position. The appeal was successful and we are delighted with the support we received. John was highly recommended to us by a friend, and we would certainly recommend him ourselves.
Mr and Mrs G on Thursday, 11th July 2013
John was a great assistance to us in preparing for and attending two appeal hearings alongside us. His initial advice was extremely helpful in identifying that we had a case, and was able to recognise that although our preferred school was locally believed to be impossible to appeal against, the structure of the class sizes meant that an appeal was possible. John provided us with constant advice throughout the almost three months from preparing our appeal statement to the final hearing. He was always accessible and helpful via email and telephone. In attending the appeal hearings alongside us, John brought with him great technical knowledge, insightful questioning and was a great general counsel in what can be an extremely stressful and alien format. We were delighted to be successful in our appeal, and would recommend John to anyone needing advice or representation in an appeal situation.
Mr & Mrs S on Friday, 5th July 2013
John was recommended to us by a friend working in admissions for another local authority area. His advice in preparing our daughter’s appeal gave us great comfort that we were pursuing the right lines of enquiry. His assistance in probing the local authority case undoubtedly helped us to show that we would provide strong opposition at the appeal. Thankfully there was a fairly spectacular climb-down before the appeal and our daughter was offered a place. John’s cool appraisal of the situation and warm support was extremely welcome and we would thoroughly recommend John to other parents.
Aidan Marsh on Friday, 24th May 2013
I just want to express our heartfelt thanks to John, for his laser-like guidance and support in the weeks leading up to my son’s secondary school appeal. He was fantastic. Had it not been for John’s help I don’t think we would have succeeded. John reviewed all the information and steered us in the right direction. Without his help we would not have fully understood the options and strategies open to us. It was these strategies and his help that led to our successful appeal. It was always a pleasure talking to John and we exchanged many emails. If you want to significantly increase your chances of success enlist John’s help. Thanks John. From Kieron, Gillian and an extra special thanks from our son Erin.
Kieron Sweeney on Saturday, 4th May 2013
I came across John whilst searching the internet for some tips with regard to a mid year place appeal. John offered my family some invaluable advice. He was always at the end of an email and responded quickly. Thanks to John I was able to ask the right questions at the appeal and won at Stage 1. This means my daughter will now start her new school after Easter. I can’t thank John enough and would highly recommend that anyone thinking of an appeal should talk to John
Sarah O’Hora on Friday, 22nd March 2013
After 8 long months of hell we have just won an infant class size appeal for reception at Alfriston Primary School against ESCC. Throughout John has been absolutely brilliant. We had to deal with other so called professionals including one that went awol and a highly regarded solicitors that just wanted more and more money before we found John!! Thank you so much for all your help and advice. We couldn’t have done this without you.
Louise Flower on Tuesday, 20th November 2012
I can’t thank John enough for giving me the confidence to hold my nerve to go through the appeal. His advice was invaluable and helped us make a very clear case for our daughters Secondary School appeal. John enabled me to separate the emotion from the facts with fast and unlimited advice. Do your own homework but seek advice on how to use the information most effectively
Stephanie Gilding on Thursday, 27th September 2012
We would highly recommend John for assisting with any school appeal. He is incisive; extremely well informed regarding the Codes and procedures; is thoroughly adept at teasing out the salient points; and leaves no stone unturned. Our infant class size appeal was a complicated case which involved issues concerning exceptional medical and social need. The appeal was successful and the panel specifically made reference to points John had advised for inclusion. John went more than the extra mile for us; and provided invaluable support for us at every stage. The service was nothing less than sterling and we would have felt completely adrift were it not for John. He is polite, professional at all times, and it was a pleasure to deal with.
SK & AR on Tuesday, 28th August 2012