As people return from their no doubt well-earned summer holidays, there is much to be found in the news which is of interest to education lawyers (and indeed normal people too).
First up, the GTCE has been busy regulating the profession before its forthcoming abolition by the provisions of the Education Bill 2011. On 2nd September 2011, it found teacher Benedict Garrett, otherwise known as ‘Johnny Anglais’, guilty of unacceptable professional conduct and issued him with a reprimand. Something of a moral debate has broken out over whether teachers who earn money on the side in the sex industry are suitable material for the classroom. Unfortunately the GTCE committee’s judgment is not currently available on their website, but you can read Mr Garrett’s take on the whole affair here.
Secondly, the first free schools have been opening their doors. For help on what a free school really is (in strict terms it is simply an academy under the Academies Act 2010) readers of this blog cannot go far wrong with Joanne Clement’s paper on academies which is to be found here. There is also a helpful short paper which has been written by the staff of the House of Commons library which you can find here.
Elsewhere, the DfE has published new statutory guidance on teachers’ pay and conditions and new national minimum standards for residential special schools and boarding schools. When Parliament returns from recess, the Education Bill 2011 will continue its journey through the House of Lords committee stage with a meeting on 12th September. It is now not very far away from receiving Royal Assent.