Expert, practical advice to Sixth Form Colleges

Recognised experts in advising Sixth Form Colleges, covering all their needs


Blake Morgan’s Education team are recognised experts in helping sixth form colleges in all the areas where they need advice. We are proud to work in partnership with sixth form colleges and the Sixth Form Colleges Association (‘SFCA’) to provide specialist, practical advice from our network of offices.

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Main Areas Of Practice


We have an experienced team who specialise in advising sixth form colleges. Our experience includes:

Governance and administration

Over recent years the educational landscape has changed significantly. Our education experts stay up to date with proposed and upcoming changes to education law and regulation. We understand what these changes mean for your sixth form college and are able to provide commercial, pragmatic advice on all areas of governance and administration.

Mergers

If you are considering a merger with another education provider our legal experts will work with you to understand your objectives and secure the best possible outcome for you, your staff and your students.

Funding arrangements

We advise on all finance and borrowing facilities loans and other funding for development.

DfE and local authorities

We advise on all dealings with the DfE and local authorities.

Faith colleges and academies

Our expert team is experienced in advising diocesan authorities in relation to faith colleges and academies.

Employment advice

Our Employment team deals with a wide range of issues cases for sixth form colleges. We provide a full employment service in relation to teachers and staff including the Red and Lilac Books.

Equality and discrimination

We support you in ensuring an inclusive environment for your staff and students.

Trade unions and collective bargaining

Our experience includes advising on strikes, strike pay and industrial relations.

Freedom of information and GDPR

We have a dedicated team who advise further education clients on this fast developing area of law. This includes all aspects of GDPR compliance including the review and variation of contracts with suppliers and other third parties and updating standard contract terms. We are the only law firm accredited by the British Computer Society to provide its Practitioner Certificate in Data Protection course.

Safeguarding and health and safety

Our Critical Incident team provides a 24-hour legal response service in the event of an incident or emergency situation. Our experienced team of solicitors and barristers are on hand 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to support sixth form colleges in the event of any health and safety or safeguarding incident.

Fitness to practice

If the conduct or performance of a member of your teaching staff is called into question, our education experts work closely with our regulatory team to provide expert advice.

Pupil discipline and sanctions

Our education experts advise on all aspects of student discipline, suspension and exclusions.

Procurement and commercial

Our lawyers advise on a wide range of commercial agreements and procurements for sixth form colleges, arrangements for funding staff and student recruitment and teaching.

Intellectual property protection

We have advised sixth form colleges on IP ownership issues, licensing arrangements and drafting and negotiating internal IP protocols for staff and students.

Real estate and construction

We advise on a range of issues including land management, acquisition and disposals, development, planning and construction, college land, playing field reverter, publicly funded land and shared leisure and other facilities.

Dispute management

We work closely with sixth form colleges to resolve conflicts quickly. We focus on finding a resolution so that you can focus on your students.

Academy conversions

We act for sixth form colleges, single academy trusts, multi-academy trusts and sponsored converters.

Special Educational / Additional Learning Needs

We provide advice in relation to appeals brought by children, young people, their parents or case friends relating to Special Educational Needs and/or Additional Learning Needs (from 1 Sep 2021 onwards in Wales). From negotiations relating to EHCs, Statements or IDPs in an attempt to avoid an appeal to the Tribunal, to representation at and the administration of Tribunal proceedings (through to appeals to the Upper Tribunal), we have the expertise to assist Local Authorities, CCGs, Health Boards and educational institutions in relation to their roles and responsibilities throughout the process.

Our Clients


We act for a number of sixth form colleges across England. We also work in close partnership with the Sixth Form Colleges Association to provide advice, training and guidance to sixth form colleges, through our seminar programme with the SFCA.

"We are delighted to become the first sixth form college to academise and would like to thank the team at Blake Morgan for guiding us through the process. With their experience in the education sector, Blake Morgan was an obvious choice when selecting a legal advisor. We were impressed by their professionalism, commitment and ability to complete the conversion process successfully."
- Then Principal, Hereford Sixth Form College


"Blake Morgan LLP's multi-disciplinary team, which is made up of litigators and corporate, real estate and employment specialists among others, provides 'an excellent service'."
- The Legal 500 2019


Highlights


We advised on the academy conversion of Hereford Sixth Form College which became the first sixth form college to convert to academy status in March 2017.


We have advised sixth form colleges in relation to their proposals to join or form multi-academy trusts ("MATs") with other sixth form colleges or schools. This has involved a wide range of advice, including due diligence, governance and funding issues, liaison with the DfE and local authorities, and advice in relation to property, employment and pensions. 


Our Experts


Matthew
Smith
Partner

Cardiff

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Ben
Brice
Legal Director

Reading

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Kirsteen
Hook
Senior Associate

Southampton

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Laura
Sherratt
Senior Solicitor

Reading

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Rachel
Sales
Senior Associate

Oxford

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Eve
Piffaretti
Partner

Cardiff

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Joanna
Corbett-Simmons
Senior Associate

Cardiff

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Daniel
Taylor
Lawyer - Chartered Legal Executive

Cardiff

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BM Insights


Events

Our Public Sector Network event on Wednesday 13 October 2021 looked at the current challenges facing employers.

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Articles

A quick guide on the changes coming into force on 1 September 2021, by the Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018. Commencement Orders From 1 September 2021,...

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Articles

Earlier this summer the Department for Education (DfE) published the new Academy Trust Handbook which takes effect from 1 September 2021 and we summarise the key changes here. It is...

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Articles

Usually, when schools convert to academy status, this is a joint decision supported by both the governing body of the school in question, and the academy trust into which the...

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Articles

The Department for Education has recently published updated statutory guidance for schools and colleges on safeguarding children and safer recruitment.

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Events

Our Public Sector Network event on Monday 26 July 2021 was on the topic of the Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018.

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