No5 Barristers’ Chambers is renowned for the provision of expert advice and representation in educational matters. An experienced team of barristers assists parents and pupils, as well as charities, governing bodies of schools, colleges, multi-academy trusts, universities and Local Authorities. The work we do is both in the state-maintained and independent sectors. Our team’s expertise overlaps with our strengths in public law, human rights, employment and misconduct and compliance.
Members of our team have, for example, been involved in the establishment and operation of academies and free schools, reinstatement of excluded pupils, the jurisdiction of the First-tier Tribunal, university exclusions and judicial review challenges the contents of EHCPs and the inclusion into the mainstream of pupils with SEND.
Our team’s wide-ranging expertise includes:
- Special Educational Needs and Disability, including:
- appeals to the First-tier Tribunal (formerly Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal)
- appeals from the FTT to the Upper Tribunal (formerly High Court) and above
- and judicial review challenges to compel delivery of provision in an EHCP
- Discrimination cases in both the First-tier Tribunal and the County Court involving allegations of discrimination on grounds of disability, sex, race, sexual identity or religion throughout the education system.
- Disciplinary matters, including
- exclusions from schools, colleges and universities
- judicial review challenges to decisions of governing bodies and Independent Review Panels
- Admissions, including
- judicial review and discrimination challenges to admissions criteria
- challenges to individual decisions of Admissions Appeal Panels
- School closures and school re-organisations, including in relation to academies and free schools
- Employment questions that are specific to the education field in both maintained and independent schools
- Educational negligence and other damages claims
- Qualifications Bodies, for example, Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual), European Qualifications Framework (EQF), Department for Children, Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills (DCELLS), Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA)
- Governance and funding.
The team accepts direct access instructions and are also able to provide legal assessors to advise and support independent lay panels dealing with a wide range of educational issues.