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Who Represents Who

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Browne Jacobson LLP handles work on behalf of schools, academies and education trusts. Mark Blois heads the national team, and the ‘outstanding and difficult to over-praiseNick MacKenzie leads the Birmingham practice. Helen Badger is recommended.

Nick Abbott leads the ‘outstanding, responsive and focusedMills & Reeve LLP team, which is experienced in working with schools, academies, and further education and higher education clients. Notable work in 2015 included assisting Birmingham City University in the £82m development of student apartments, and assisting Coventry University with a £73m project to convert an iconic building into student accommodation. Jayne Hussey joined from Pinsent Masons LLP.

Pinsent Masons LLP acts for key clients in the HE sector, including the LSE, University of London and University College London. Gayle Ditchburn was made up to partner, and corporate restructuring specialist Amy Flavell was recruited from Squire Patton Boggs, while Jayne Hussey moved to Mills & Reeve LLP. Nicola Hart is practice head.

Shakespeare Martineau LLP has ‘an in-depth understanding of the sector’. Recent highlights involve advising a number of FE institutions on mergers. As well as this, the practice continues to represent respected clients in the HE sector. Smita Jamdar heads the practice, and Joanna Forbes is recommended. Jane Byford and Clive Read both left for Veale Wasbrough Vizards, while Ruth Phillips joined from Mills & Reeve LLP.

Notable work for Bevan Brittan LLP included advising Bristol City Council on its infrastructural school building programmes, which was led by practice head Andrew Tobin. Another key contact is David Hutton.

Diane Gilhooley is the head of Eversheds LLP’s national and international education practice. The team has a large client base in the FE and HE sectors. A notable highlight for the practice was assisting Loughborough University with a number of IP matters.

The team at Gowling WLG is headed by Mark Greenburgh and also includes John Cooper. A recent highlight was acting for awards and qualifications body Ofqual, in a challenge brought by 150 schools to overturn GCSE grades.

Irwin Mitchell’s team acts for schools, trusts and colleges, with a strong focus on HR issues. A recent highlight was representing a Wolverhampton school in appealing a warning notice issued by Ofsted relating to its budget. Key contacts are Surinder Dhillon and Laurence Gavin.

Lanyon Bowdler’s team has particular expertise in relation to academy conversion, HR matters and governance. David Brammer joined from Shakespeare Martineau LLP, while Christopher Piggott moved to MFG Solicitors LLP.

Veale Wasbrough Vizards’ practice was strengthened through the hires of Jane Byford and Clive Read from Shakespeare Martineau LLP and employment specialist Kathy Halliday from DWF. Recent panel wins include University of Leicester, the Royal College of Music and Grantham Preparatory International School.

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Legal Developments in West Midlands for Education


    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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