Updates on education law

DBS application forms
Don’t forget that from 28 March 2013 the Home Office began to accept only DBS application forms; applications made using the old CRB forms will be rejected and returned.  The Home Office had previously stated that the CRB forms could only be used until 28 February 2013, but recently extended this by one month.

Working Together to Safeguard Children guidance
On 21 March 2013 the Department for Education issued revised “Working Together to Safeguard Children” guidance.  This guidance came into force on 15 April 2013 and clarifies the legal requirements that those organisations working with children must follow.  It also keeps 45 working days as the maximum time to complete an assessment of a child’s case so that it is possible to reach a decision on the next steps.  Watch this space, however, as the Government plans to monitor the impact of the changes and whether the time limit can be abolished.

DfE updates
On 22 March 2013 the
DfE updated its advice on school attendance.  Revised guidance deals with pupil registers and attendance codes, advice on the school day and year and statutory guidance on education-related parenting contracts, parenting orders and penalty notices.  The document will be reviewed again in July 2013.

Also in March the DfE issued updated non-statutory advice on fair access protocols by clarifying the role, obligations and duties of local authorities and schools under the School Admissions Code 2012, and ensuring that any disputes about individual cases are escalated efficiently.

The High Court has decided that the free school transport which the Local Authority must provide under section 508B of the Education Act 1996 does not have to be “door to door”.  An LA may arrange for an eligible child to be transported to school using a pick up point which could be a reasonable distance from the child’s home.  As part of this the council could impose a particular pick up point on the parents, which might not be the child’s home. (R(M and Another) v London Borough of Hounslow [2013] EWHC 579 (Admin) (15 March 2013)).

The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.