Dai Durbridge, Partner, Browne Jacobson LLP
Dai is a partner in the Education team at Browne Jacobson. Dai specialises in advising schools and academies on all pastoral education issues, including admissions, exclusions, parental complaints, use of force and searching pupils. A recognised safeguarding expert, he regularly supports schools on complex safeguarding issues including handling disclosures of abuse, managing allegations against staff and parental consent.
Philip Wood, Solicitor, Browne Jacobson LLP
Philip specialises in education law advice to schools and academies including governance, admissions, exclusions, special educational needs, safeguarding, academy conversions and academy transfers.
Laura Berman, Partner, Stone King
Laura Berman joined Stone King in April 2012 and specialises in Education Law. Laura has particular expertise in admissions, exclusions and pupil/parent issues such as Special Educational Needs and helps clients with contentious and non-contentious issues. Her depth of experience allows her to be able to advise individuals and institutions in both the maintained and the independent sectors. Outside of her legal practice, Laura delivers workshops and training, is a school governor and a member of the Education Law Association.
Nicola Bennison, Partner, Eversheds Sutherland
Nicola is a partner in the Employment Group. She has considerable experience of employment tribunal litigation with a particular focus on the Education Sector. Nicola is an experienced tribunal advocate and has appeared on behalf of respondents in cases involving a wide range of issues including unfair dismissal, wrongful dismissal, discrimination, whistleblowing, TUPE and pay. In her broader Education practice, Nicola also advises on student issues and regulatory challenge of education bodies.
Jan Baines, Schools Admissions Manager, Northamptonshire County Council
Jan has experience of being a School Admissions Manager in 3 different settings. As clerk to a number of admission appeals panels over the years – including being school appeals manager for a COE Diocese and also for a group of academies – she has clerked over 1000 appeals for both maintained schools and academies. She is a member of both the East Midlands Regional Admissions Group and the Eastern Region Admissions Group and a representative on the DfE Admissions Group.
Matt Lake, Clerk to Governors, The Bridge London Trust
Matt has worked as a school governance professional for the last 10 years during which he has provided governance support to a wide range of state schools. Matt is in the lead governance position in The Bridge London Trust, a MAT formed in 2017 containing a mix of special and mainstream schools. Within the Trust Matt is supporting the development of its governance structures and the distribution of responsibilities between its main Trust Board and Local Governing Bodies whilst continuing to provide support to a number of governing bodies of other schools and academies.