Browne Jacobson’s education team has been confirmed as a national powerhouse after securing five Tier 1 rankings in the latest edition of Legal 500 for the very first time, and maintaining its Band 1 UK-wide ranking for Education (Institutions – Schools) in Chambers & Partners UK 2022.
Browne Jacobson’s education team has been confirmed as a national powerhouse after securing five Tier 1 rankings in the latest edition of Legal 500 for the very first time. The team also maintained its Band 1 UK-wide ranking for Education (Institutions – Schools) in Chambers & Partners UK 2022.
This year the firm’s South West based team improved its Legal 500 ranking to Tier 1 meaning the firm nationally and all five of its regional teams in Birmingham, Exeter, London, Manchester and Nottingham are now awarded the directory’s highest ranking.
Described by Legal 500 as an “outstanding” and “very knowledgeable team”, the firm’s education practice supports over 1300 schools and academies every year from its five-office national network. The team’s market-leading reputation means that they are often the first port of call for education clients seeking advice and support on matters attracting political, societal and media attention and a hallmark of the team’s approach is to combine their legal expertise and deep education sector understanding to provide advice that enables their clients to navigate the evolving education landscape.
This year one client told Legal 500 that Browne Jacobson were an “exceptional company to work with …. sage advice, professional input and guidance. Their understanding of the education sector is exceptional” and another commented that the education team had a “uniqueness built around their helpful and valued mix of support and challenge. They provide more than a service. They challenge our thinking, offer different often unique perspectives and contribute effectively to our mission”.
The “outstanding” head of education Mark Blois is named in Legal 500’s ‘Hall of Fame’ for Education (Schools) and Education (institutions) for London and for the Public Sector in the East Midlands. Mark is also ranked as a ‘Leading Individual’ in the East Midlands alongside partners Dai Durbridge (North West), Julia Green (London, South West) and Richard Freeth and Nick MacKenzie (West Midlands). They are joined by recent Partner hire Charlotte Antoniou who is ranked as a ‘Next Generation Partner’ with Legal Director Lydia Michaelson-Yeates and Senior Associate Hayley O’Sullivan (West Midlands) and Senior Associate Victoria Hatton (South West) named as ‘Rising Stars’.
The team’s Band 1 UK-wide ranking for Education (Institutions – Schools) in Chambers & Partners UK 2022 caps off the best directory rankings the team has received to date. According to Chambers UK 2022 the firm has a “stellar education practice providing in-depth advice and support to a wide range of schools and academies across the country” with clients describing the team as "customer-focused, innovative and experts in their field."
Six lawyers in Browne Jacobson’s Education team have also this year received a UK wide individual ranking by Chambers UK including Mark Blois (Band One), Nick Mackenzie and Bettina Rigg (Band Two), Dai Durbridge, Richard Freeth and Charlotte Antoniou (all Band Four) and additionally Tom Briant-Evans was ranked as an ‘Associate to Watch’.
Regardless of the outcome of ballots on industrial action, unless there is drastic change to funding for schools in relation to pay increases, it will be unusual to find any organisational budget that is not impacted by the current economic situation.
There’s been little evidence of interventions or financial management reviews this year and it appears the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) has re-focussed on financial delivery. It’s also telling that there were no discernible changes to the reporting of financial irregularities in the Academies Trust Handbook 2022.
The Children’s Commissioner, Rachel De Souza, has recently published a report “Beyond the labels: a SEND system which works for every child, every time”, which she intends to sit alongside the DfE’s SEND Review (2019) and SEND Green Paper (2022) and which she hopes will put children’s voices at the heart of the government’s review of SEND system.
As well as providing day-to-day support to help you focus on managing your settings, we also provide training and professional development on a range of topics to keep you and your staff up-to-date.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHCR) recently issued new, non-statutory guidance regarding the wearing of natural or protective hairstyles, specifically in reference to their representation in uniform, behaviour or standalone appearance policies.
Emma Hughes, head of HR services at Browne Jacobson, explains how CST’s updated executive pay report and the linked benchmarking service from XpertHR can help trust boards make robust decisions on pay.
There’s greater opportunity than ever for parents, carers and guardians to voice any concerns they have relating to their child’s education and for their concerns to be heard and to be taken seriously. While most staff in schools and academies are conscious of their legal duties relating to complaints management, many are struggling to cope with such a significant increase in the volume of complaints they must manage.
This guidance has been prepared to support academy trusts (Trusts) who want to hold a fully virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM) or a hybrid AGM, as we know that Trusts may want to be prepared for future disruption as well as having a general interest in holding more meetings virtually. The guidance also applies to other meetings of the Members (known as General Meetings).
We’re pleased to collaborate with Lloyds Bank, who recently asked us and audit and risk specialists Crowe UK to offer guidance that academy trusts would find helpful when considering setting up a trading subsidiary.
The DfE has published new guidance and opened the application process for window two of the Trust Capacity Fund (TCaF) for 2022/2023, with a fund of £86m in trust capacity funding focused particularly on education investment areas.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse was established in March 2015. We now have its report. As you would expect with such a broad scope, the report is long and makes a number of far-reaching recommendations. In this article, Dai Durbridge highlights seven of the 20 recommendations, sets out how they could impact on schools and suggests what steps to take now.
Browne Jacobson’s education team has been named as winner of the ‘Legal Advisors to Education Institutions’ category at the Education Investor Awards 2022 for a record sixth time.
Since the new Suspensions and Exclusions Statutory Guidance was published, we have received a lot of questions about the use of managed moves. For the first time, the Statutory Guidance does explain what a managed move is, but in relatively broad terms and does not cover the mechanics of how a managed move should operate.
Over 3000 young people from across the UK and Ireland took part in a virtual legal careers insight event, aimed at making the legal profession more diverse.
Holly Quirk, an associate barrister in Browne Jacobson’s Manchester office, was awarded the Legal Professional of the Year Award at this year’s Manchester Young Talent Awards.
The risk of assault against staff is, sadly, something that all schools need to consider carefully. Here one legal expert explains what they can do to protect staff and ensure they fulfil their duty of care.