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Be connected newsletter for education - September 2021

17 September 2021

In this edition we provide you with the latest in legal updates, news and insight from the sector.

be connected is your space – it is important that the mix of content offers you real value and relevant, useful information. Please help us to help you by providing feedback and comments. What would you like to see featured in the newsletter – and would you like to be part of a future edition – click here to let us know!

Legal updates

Head of Education, Mark Blois celebrates 25 years of being an education lawyer

Mark Blois, Browne Jacobson’s national Head of Education, is marking a notable anniversary, an incredible 25 years as an education lawyer.

The new academic year 2021/22 will see the 25th anniversary of the start of Mark’s career as an education lawyer. As he reaches this major milestone Mark reflects on his professional journey and some of the achievements of the Browne Jacobson team he founded and has led.

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Civil claims in schools

Civil claims are an ongoing area of concern for schools, with the potential for financial and reputational implications. In this article, claims specialist Katherine Langley explores some of the more common types of personal-injury and non-injury claims that arise in a school setting.

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Updated guidance on Covid-19 vaccinations for 12 to 15 years olds

Yesterday, the Department of Health and Social Care announced that young people aged 12 to 15 are to be offered a Covid-19 vaccine. In this article, our health and safety experts share their advice to school leaders.

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Teacher assessed grades and proposed changes to assessment in 2022

During the summer break, students were issued with their final teacher assessed grades in GCSE, AS, A Level and other qualifications, with the vast majority achieving exceptional grades.

Schools and students alike should be rightly proud of their successes, particularly given the severe disruption caused by the pandemic.

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HR and employment Covid-19 FAQs for schools and academies – September 2021

With many Covid-19 restrictions now removed we have prepared a new set of employment and HR-related FAQs to support you as the new academic year gets underway.

They cover key topics including vaccines, wellbeing and managing anxiety and long Covid.

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Terminating a contract: what steps do you need to take?

Ending a contract can be a tricky task, especially when you don’t know where to begin. Contracts can be lengthy, wordy and a puzzle at times. The good news is, whether you’re dealing with a catering, cleaning or other service or goods contract, the approach to termination largely remains the same.

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Bill introduced to Parliament to enable Ofsted to have powers to inspect MATs

A former teacher and MP on the current Commons Education Select Committee, Jonathan Gullis, has introduced a bill to give Ofsted the power to inspect Multi Academy Trusts.

It comes after Ofsted’s Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman advised the committee earlier this year that Ofsted is constrained by only being able to carry out individual school inspections rather than inspections of MATs.

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Information Tribunal supports school’s position to refuse an FOI request for assessment data of other students

Following the awarding of qualifications based on determinations made by staff at examination centres over the past two years during the Covid-19 pandemic, a number of students and their parents have sought to challenge the awards.

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New EduCompli courses now live!

Many of you are already using EduCompli, our innovative and engaging online staff-compliance training platform. Written by our expert lawyers and HR advisors, the all-staff courses are fun, engaging and easy to use, include built-in case studies based on real life examples and provide detailed reporting to highlight knowledge gaps across your school or trust.

In response to demand, four new courses have been launched for the 2021/22 academic year:

  • Staff Code of Conduct
  • Staff and social media risks
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Whistle-blowing

The existing Data Protection and Child Protection modules have also been updated with new case studies, new rounds and refreshed questions throughout.

For further information about EduCompli and to sign-up for a complimentary trial visit the EduCompli web page.

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Save the date

FAIRE – access to legal careers

Browne Jacobson is once again delighted to work in partnership with Young Professionals to revolutionise social mobility and access to careers in the legal sector.

FAIRE 2.0 will be taking place virtually on 27 and 28 October 2021 and is open to all students between the ages of 16 and 19 who are considering a career in law (and other industries). Please encourage your staff to keep an eye out for further information from Young Professionals (including the registration link) that will be issued shortly.

Find out more >

Training and events

28Sep

Exclusions training for senior leaders and governing boards Interactive session via Zoom

This two-hour, online interactive training session focuses on all you need to know about the exclusions framework for schools and trusts. It’s designed to help ensure schools are compliant with exclusions law and guidance as well as considering wider issues.

View event

3Oct

Safeguarding Training for Governors and Trustees Interactive session via Zoom

This two-hour safeguarding course via zoom is designed specifically for governors and trustees. It steers away from operational safeguarding matters and instead focuses on strategic safeguarding and good safeguarding governance, meeting the requirements of The Governance Handbook 2022 and Keeping Children Safe 2022.

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Focus on...

Published articles

Key steps to avoid falling foul of disability discrimination laws

The law around disability discrimination against pupils is not straightforward – but the reputational risk, let alone costs, of falling foul of the law are huge, so it’s worth upskilling staff whenever possible, as these two lawyers outline.

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Employment Law – Harpur Trust v Brazel – Implications for schools webinar

On 20 July 2022, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited judgment in the case of Harpur Trust v Brazel, upholding the decision of the Court of Appeal. For those of you familiar with this case, you will know that it concerns the statutory leave requirements for part-time and part-year workers. For schools and academies whose workforce consists of a variety of types of part-time and part-year workers, this case is one that must be understood before any changes are applied. Come and join Emma Hughes, Head of HR Services as she puts questions to Ian Deakin, Employment Partner, and Sarah Linden, Senior Associate.

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Press releases

Leading education lawyers play major role as DfE announces 10,000th academy conversion

The Department for Education (DfE) have announced that the conversion of Donisthorpe Primary School in Leicestershire on 1st September marked the 10,000th academy conversion.

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Guides

How to carry out the KCSiE online checks FAQs

There is (understandably) some confusion about the steps schools and trusts need to take to discharge the new online check duty set out in paragraph 220 of KCSIE. I can’t completely clarify all of it for you, but I can help you find a sensible route through. These FAQs are a good place to start.

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The content on this page is provided for the purposes of general interest and information. It contains only brief summaries of aspects of the subject matter and does not provide comprehensive statements of the law. It does not constitute legal advice and does not provide a substitute for it.

Mark Blois

Mark Blois

Partner and Head of Education

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