What is Choice Advice?

Choice Advice is a service for all parents and carers, and not just those of children with special educational needs.

Choice Advice offers impartial information and support on schools’ admissions and the transition process.

Information can be provided about all schools in your area however it is families who decide the best choice to make for their child’s requirements. The Choice Advice Service cannot guarantee or offer a place at a specific school.


What is the Somerset Choice Advice Service?
The Somerset Choice Advice Service is an impartial service which supports families with advice and practical support through the school admissions and appeals processes.

This service exists to ensure that parents are able to play an active and informed role in securing a school place for their child.


Our Aims:

The Somerset Choice Advice Service aims to support families through the admissions and appeals processes however at busy times it may not always be possible for an adviser to attend appeal hearings.


How can we help you?

We can provide impartial information on:

  • How the admissions and appeals processes work
  • How the Oversubscription Criteria affects an application
  • Infant Class Size Regulations
  • Practical support via email, telephone or face to face
  • School Transport
  • How to complain


What can the Choice Adviser offer?

  • Impartial information about schools and academies
  • Explain how to fill in an application form
  • Advise on how to prepare for an admission or transport appeal
  • Attend appeal hearings


How do I qualify for help at an appeal hearing?

  • Parents/Carers who qualify for any of the following may receive support to prepare and attend an appeal hearing:
  • Free school meals
  • Maximum Working Tax Credits or Child Tax Credit
  • Fair Access Criteria
  • Schools Funding for Children’s Special Educational Needs – Element 2



What next?

Remember

  • Plan Ahead
  • Visit the schools and talk to the Headteacher
  • Check the school’s admission rules
  • Apply online and on time
  • In-Year applications: use a separate application form for each school and apply to the School
  • Parents have the right of appeal if the application is refused


Contact Us

If you need any further help or information on Choice Advice please contact:

Email: choiceadvice@somerset.gov.uk
Phone: 01823 356903

The Choice Advice Service
Somerset SENDIAS
The Hollies Childrens Centre
South Street
Taunton
TA1 3AG