Education Law

Our education law barristers act for a wide range of clients across the complete range of education disputes with a particular focus on vulnerable clients. We appear in all courts, tribunals and domestic panels in which education law issues arise.

To contact the clerks, please email or phone 

+44 (0)20 7993 7600

Our education law expertise overlaps closely with related areas including public law, community care law, children's rights, immigration law, human rights law, discrimination and equality law and employment law.

Areas of Expertise

  • Judicial review challenges relating to delivery of provision specified in Statements and EHC Plans
  • Special Educational Needs appeals (including relating to Statements of SEN and Education, Health and Care Plans)
  • Educational negligence and related damages claims
  • Discrimination related allegations including on the grounds of disability, sex, race, sexual identity or religion/belief
  • Discipline matters and challenges to decisions of school governing bodies and Independent Review Panels
  • Employment law issues in schools and other educational institutions
  • Issues related to higher and further education matters ranging from admissions, to discipline, to academic assessment
  • Challenges to decisions of qualification bodies
  • Challenges to admissions procedures and admissions criteria for schools and other institutions
  • School closures and re-organisations, including the introduction/expansion of academies, free schools and grammar schools
  • Supporting solicitors to apply for Exceptional Case Funding for SEND appeals and challenges to refusals of funding
  • SEND mediation services

Our education law barristers have a particular focus on access to education for migrant children, as well as children and young adults in care and disabled children and their families. We are at the cutting edge of litigation in this area of law and our barristers have materially contributed to changes in government policy and practice. 

Our counsel are regularly instructed in schools and higher education cases, especially relating to discrimination and public law issues that arise in accessing education. We have expertise acting in high value special educational needs cases and in complex discrimination claims. In higher education this also extends to internal disciplinary hearings, fitness to practice matters and in appeals to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA). 

Past Notable Cases


  • EM v Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead [2024]:  A successful Upper Tribunal appeal that clarified that the test for ceasing to maintain an EHCP does not include the question of whether a certain level of educational attainment could be reached in proportion to the amount of provision.
  • R(XYZ) v City, University of London [2024]: A significant Court of Appeal case concerning procedural fairness in university internal investigations into allegations of sexual violence. The case was conceded by City, University of London shortly before a final hearing, with a detailed statement of reasons and the Appellant awarded their costs. The Lady Chief Justice, at an earlier hearing, also provided guidance regarding the Office of the Independent Adjudicator as an alternative remedy to judicial review.
  • R (TZA) v A Secondary School [2023] EWHC 1722 (Admin): The leading High Court case on the Public Sector Equality Duty (‘PSED’) and school exclusions. Permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal granted.
  • LC and RC v Hampshire County Council [2023] UKUT 281 (AAC):  Upper Tribunal case on the test that should be applied when section I of an EHCP is in dispute.
  • R (AI) v London Borough of Lambeth and Secretary of State for Education [2023] EWHC 2088 (Admin): High Court case concerning PSED-compliance in securing special educational provision for a transgender young person.
  • GP v Lime Trust, Equality and Human Rights Commission Intervening [2023] UKUT 77 (AAC): Test case on the jurisdiction of the First-tier Tribunal to consider PSED compliance in disability discrimination claims against schools.
  • R (CR) (by their Litigation Friend, TI) v Director of Legal Aid Casework and Lord Chancellor [2023] EWCA Civ 717: A successful systemic challenge in the High Court that led to the Lord Chancellor expanding legal aid eligibility for Looked After Children in SEND Tribunal proceedings, with satellite litigation in the Court of Appeal on retrospective modification of Costs Capping Orders (‘CCOs’).
  • R(A Parent) v Governing Body of XYZ School [2022] EWHC 1146 (Admin): High Court case considering procedural fairness in school decision-making regarding permanent exclusion from school.
  • R (LB) v Surrey County Council [2022] EWHC 772 (Admin): A successful judicial review on behalf of a disabled child in which the High Court granted six mandatory orders against a local authority for “serious and substantial” breaches of its duties to provide special educational provision and social care.
  • R (Naeem) v Secretary of State for Education [2022] EWHC 15 (Admin): A successful judicial review challenging student finance regulations on the basis that they are discriminatory and in breach of Article 14 ECHR.

Contact team

We are top ranked by independent legal directories and consistently win awards.

+ View more awards