11 KBW: Education Blog

A blog covering recent developments in education law, produced by members of 11 KBW, a set of barristers’ chambers in the Temple whose areas of expertise include public, administrative and commercial law.

Additional Support Needs Tribunals for Scotland

Under the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Acts 2004 and 2009 Scottish education authorities may draw up Co-ordinated Support Plans (CSPs) for children and young people who have “additional support needs”. Additional Support Needs Tribunals hear appeals made by parents and young people on certain matters relating to such plans. The site’s content includes information on the complaints procedure, annual reports, links to legislation, and a decisions database.

Child Law Advice: Education

Child Law Advice is a charity providing advice on child, family and education law, operated by Coram Children’s Legal Centre. The education section of its web site provides information about a wide variety of topics, including school admissions, exclusion, discrimination in education, and home schooling, with links to relevant legislation, codes, and guidance documents.

Department for Education

The Department for Education (DfE) is responsible for education and children’s services in England. It was formed on 12 May 2010, replacing the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF). This section of the GOV.UK web site provides information on the department’s activities, policies, announcements, consultations and publications. There are sections on statutory guidance for schools and local authorities and on the constitution of governing bodies.

Education Workforce Council

The Education Workforce Council (EWC) is the independent regulator in Wales for teachers and learning support staff in schools and further education. It became operational on 1 April 2015 as successor to the General Teaching Council for Wales (GTCW). Its Register of Education Professionals is searchable online. Site content also includes the Code of Professional Conduct and Practice, registration rules, disciplinary procedures and rules, and notices of recent fitness to practise committee hearing outcomes.

European Commission: Education and Training

The web site of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Education and Training includes information about policies and initiatives. The “Resources” section includes a variety of documents and publications, and details of recent public consultations.

General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland

The General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland (GTCNI) was set up under the Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1998 as the self-regulating professional body for the teaching profession in Northern Ireland. It maintains a register of teachers in Northern Ireland which is searchable online. Documents on the site include the Code of Values and Professional Practice.

General Teaching Council for Scotland

The General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) was set up under the Teaching Council (Scotland) Act 1965 as the regulatory body for the teaching profession in Scotland. It maintains a register, searchable online, of teachers who are eligible to teach in public sector schools in Scotland. Also on the site are details of the complaints procedure, and documents which include professional standards, rules, codes of practice and standing orders.

Govan Law Centre: Education Law Unit

Govan Law Centre’s Education Law Unit is a legal resource specialising in the law relating to school education, particularly in the areas of discrimination and human rights. The web site includes education and education law news, information about recent cases, a variety of education law articles, a collection of links, and information about the unit’s work and services.

Governance Handbook and Competency Framework

This page on the GOV.UK web site provides a link to the January 2017 edition of the Governance Handbook, a Department for Education publication describing the roles and duties of school governors, the January 2017 edition of the Competency framework for governance, the April 2017 edition of the Clerking competency framework, and a link to departmental advice on statutory policies and documents for schools. The Handbook replaces the Governors’ Guide to the Law.

Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted

The Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted (ICASO) provides a review service for complainants who remain dissatisfied after exhausting the internal complaints procedures of Ofsted (the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills). The web site includes information about the process and how to apply, and annual reports 2011 onwards.

Office of the Independent Adjudicator

The Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) has operated an independent complaints scheme for students in higher education in England and Wales since 2004, when it replaced the previous visitatorial system for higher education institutions. The site has the Rules of the scheme, forms, guidance both for students and for higher education institutions, recent decisions and annual reports.

Office of the Schools Adjudicator

The Office of the Schools Adjudicator (OSA) deals with certain kinds of dispute relating to school admission arrangements and the organisation of schools. Its section of the GOV.UK web site includes, under “Documents”, decisions February 2011 onwards and the current annual report.


Ofqual (the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation) was established in April 2008 as the regulator of qualifications, examinations and assessments in England. Information here on the GOV.UK web site includes guidance, details of how to appeal exam results, and a searchable register of regulated qualifications.


Ofsted (the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills) inspects education and training for learners of all ages in England except those in higher education institutes and universities. Since 1 April 2007 it has also been responsible for the registration, regulation and inspection of children’s social care in England. Content here on the GOV.UK web site includes inspection reports, research reports, news, forms and guidance, consultations, statistics, and annual reports 1993-94 onwards.

OxCHEPS: Law of Higher Education Online Casebook

OxCHEPS is the Oxford Centre for Higher Education Policy Studies. This section of its web site is intended to accompany The Law of Higher Education by Dennis Farringdon and David Palfreyman (OUP). It provides analysis of cases relating to higher education, with particular emphasis on the relationship between higher education institutions and their students. Links are provided to full text judgments of most of the cases mentioned. The compilers are Stephen Glasper and David Palfreyman, Director of OxCHEPS.

Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal

The First-tier Tribunal (Special Educational Needs and Disability) hears appeals from parents of children with special educational needs against decisions made by English local authorities about their children’s education. Established originally in September 1994 as the Special Educational Needs Tribunal, it has since 3 November 2008 formed part of the First-tier Tribunal’s Health, Education and Social Care Chamber. This section of the GOV.UK web site has information on the appeal process including links to forms, practice directions and legislation.

Special Educational Needs Tribunal for Wales

A separate devolved Special Educational Needs Tribunal for Wales (SENTW) came into being in September 2003. Its web site has contact details and information aimed primarily at parents in Wales whose children have special educational needs.