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United Kingdom > London > Public sector > Education: individuals

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  1. Education: individuals
  2. Leading individuals (general)

Boutique practice Douglas Silas Solicitors advises exclusively on special educational needs (SEN) assessments and appeals to the Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND) Tribunal. The firm received a flow of instructions on the transfer process from Statements of SEN to Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans. Name partner Douglas Silas is recommended.

Irwin Mitchell has close links with national children’s charities, and was commissioned to deliver training programmes on the SEND reforms introduced in September 2014. The firm handled judicial review proceedings against a local authority considering the duties owed to disabled children following the reforms. Associate Polly Sweeney, who is ‘knowledgeable and experienced’, leads the team. Yogi Amin is also recommended.

Education specialist Match Solicitors is ‘a high-quality outfit’, valued for its ‘commitment, client care and professionalism’. The firm advised on a school placement case, and represented a university student in appealing an exam result. Salima Mawji who is ‘an expert in the field of higher education’, and Anita Chopra, ‘who has an excellent practical understanding of the schools sector’, co-head the team, which was bolstered by the May 2015 arrival of Chris Barnett and Kevin McManamon from Levenes.

Maxwell Gillott Solicitors has a strong track record advising on school placements and challenging exclusions, and frequently represents clients in tribunal and judicial review proceedings. The ‘pre-eminent’ team has notable expertise on post-16 education matters. Angela Jackman leads the practice, which includes Eleanor Wright and Dan Rosenberg. Elaine Maxwell left in December 2014.

John Ford Solicitors’ ‘very good’ team increasingly advises on the interface between education and community care law, and handled several instructions relating to EHC plans. The group was instructed to challenge a care plan provided for a child with autism, ADHD, ODD and an attachment disorder, which resulted in securing the child a place at a specialist independent school. Practice head Karen May is commended for her ‘rapport with clients’; name partner John Fordgoes the extra mile’; and Helen Gill is ‘excellent’.

Leigh Day’s ‘very efficient and dedicated team’ regularly handles cases with human rights issues, and is instructed on claims concerning violations of Articles 2, 5 and 8. The team advised on post-19 education matters following the introduction of the EHC plans. Richard Stein and solicitors Rosa Curling, Merry Varney and Charlotte Skouby, who is valued for her ‘great attention to detail and strong personal skills’, are all recommended. Alison Millar now heads the abuse team.

Russell-Cooke LLP’s ‘excellent’ team wins praise for its ‘client care, attention to detail and expertise’. The practice has notable expertise representing clients in disability discrimination, admissions, exclusions and school placement challenges against both schools and local authorities. Education head Eva Akins, who is ‘highly recommended’, frequently works with the children’s team on child protection matters.

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Legal Developments in London for Education: individuals


    I have been asked to cover the topic of Employment law within my half an hour speaking slot today. I have narrowed my subject down to Transfer of Undertakings and Discrimination, with the focus on providing an update on the recent spate of cases on service provision change and on the important developments in the law of age discrimination. Needless to say, in my presentation I shall not be able to cover the level of detail which is contained in my written paper, which I will leave you to read.
    - 11KBW

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