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Barrister - Ian Brownhill

Year of Call:  2009

Position:  Deputy Head of Public Law Group

Ian Brownhill Education Law CV

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Senior Practice Manager
Abdul Hafeez

Practice Group Clerks
Craig Wain
Gavin John
Lucas Bennett
Chris Graham

Chief Executive & Director of Clerking
Tony McDaid
[email protected]

Ian Brownhill - Education Law CV


Ian has a multifaceted regulatory and public law practice at No5 Chambers. Education law is a regular feature and Ian imports expertise from the Court of Protection, particularly in autism and behavioural issues into this forum.

Ian primarily acts for students or their families but is increasingly sought after by Local Authorities and Academies. Ian has also litigated issues in the private sector, including acting for a major public school and appearing in proceedings at a well regard prep school.

One area of expertise is issues around safeguarding and child protection. Ian is the Safeguarding Governor at a primary academy and has advised a diocese of the Church of England in this regard and a major sports club.

Ian has extensive experience in cross examining children and acting for them. Ian has cross examined children as young as 3 and acted for children with a variety of disabilities and special educational needs.

In the University arena, Ian specialises in student discipline, be it academic or otherwise. Ian has also advised on many University judicial review cases and civil actions for negligence, breach of contract or otherwise. Ian has drafted complaints to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator.

Ian is Chair of the governing body at a primary academy and the honorary legal advisor to a children's charity.


The clear majority of education law work that Ian undertakes is either related to safeguarding, discipline or student/parent rights.


Ian has appeared before the First-tier Tribunal (Special Educational Needs and Disability) on a number occasions about the content of EHC plans and in discrimination cases. Ian has a record in successfully striking out discrimination claims without merit and preliminary stages when instructed on behalf of schools and academies.

School and university discipline and complaints draw together Ian’s experience. Ian has defended a number of young adults as assigned counsel in the Youth Court. In addition, he has sat on occasion as the legal advisor to University discipline panels and is a confident trainer in this regard. Ian has chaired schools’ exclusion appeals and advised both schools and parents in this regard.


AR v G – Ongoing High Court proceedings with regard to exclusion from school.

C v AB – Defending injunction proceedings brought by a private school against a parent.

RE: GD appealing the exclusion of an autistic 17 year old from college.

RE: M – Successfully resisting an appeal under section 51 as to contents of EHC plan.

RE: D – Secured a strike out of a number of allegations of disability discrimination.

RE C – Appeared for parents in a stage 3 complaint hearing at a major prep school.

RE: An academy – Drafting the disciplinary policy for an academy.

RE: A major public school – Acting for a major public school in securing an anti-harassment injunction against a former employee.

RE: CJ – Advising a grant maintained faith school as to an SEN admission of severely autistic child.

RE: V – Advising a society at a leading university as to the legality of their membership policy.

PM v Independent Monitor – Judicial review of decision of Independent Monitor to allow information to appear on a student health worker’s DBS/CRB check which contradicted the findings of a Coroner’s Court.


BA Hons (Oxon) – Lincoln College, Oxford University




Tancred Student, Lincoln’s Inn

Shelford Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn