I did not mean to write yet another blog piece about the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA), but of late I am noticing increasing murmurings from students regarding the OIA. Needless to say much of what I hear (all anecdotal) is somewhat negative about people’s experiences of going through the OIA process.
What I hear often is whether it is truly independent; it is no secret that the funding for the OIA comes directly from the universities. Each university pay an annual subscription to the OIA, the amount varying depending on the size of the university.
Read more on our Higher Education Law Solicitors Blog
As part of Charles and Co.’s 10th anniversary we have decided to launch a new website. Well, it had been nearly ten years since the last website had been designed and a lot has changed in the last ten years … Everybody is on Twitter (including us @candcoedlaw.com), nobody uses Hotmail for emailing anymore, Tablets are no longer pills you get from a Pharmacist…
We are very excited to launch our new website and are proud of the excellent design and interactive quality; we hope you enjoy navigating your way round too. The design of this website has taken much time and a lot of consideration has gone it to what we think our clients want, we hope we have succeeded in giving you the information you need in a clear, concise and interactive manner.
Charles and Co looks forward to another 10 years of providing expert advice and impeccable legal services to their client community.
Over the last ten years Charles and Co.’s Family Department has grown from strength to strength. The Department has been established on the principle of providing proactive and honest advice while simultaneously trying to secure resolutions that can minimise stress to the clients.
Gurjit Chahal, head of the department, has particularly focused on resolving disputes in a constructive way designed to preserve the dignity of their clients and encourage agreement. Over the years the department has worked on an ever increasing number of high net worth cases and seen a trend in individuals wanting to work out financial disputes with minimal hostility, which is always favourable, as this approach helps preserves matrimonial assets for the parties themselves.
In the last ten years the department has also developed their practice in Child Abduction cases and have worked on a number of such cases, developing a reputation for being thought leaders in this area of law. Gurjit was recently asked to present for the Kent Chief of Police and the Kent Equality Cohesion Council on the issue of Child Abduction and in particular to highlight recourse available in the event a child is abducted out of the jurisdiction.
Gurjit has been recognised for building a strong and respected department, by being nominated on a number of occasions for various awards. In particular in December 2013 Gurjit won the British Asian Hafta Award for best female employer.
The specialist family team have a combined wealth of experience of over 30 years in relation to all aspects of Family law. Our experts ensure that they keep well acquainted with developments in all areas of law thus providing clients with unsurpassed advice.
I had the pleasure of being able to do a radio show on student’s rights for the University of Bedfordshire’s student radio (LaB 97.1FM) and what a welcoming and enjoyable experience it was!
Firstly, not only did I get to talk at length about a subject close to my heart (student rights, student rights, student rights!), but I was interviewed by two incredibly lovely young students who help run the university radio. Their interest in the subject seemed genuine (and if it was not, then they were great at making me feel fascinating). However, as always, doing the show made me realise how much students muddle through academic hearings all alone and hope for the best. It was only in my post recording discussion with some of the students from the university did they let on how little they knew about what options were available to them. They provided anecdotes of friends who had requested extensions to assignment deadlines and still had not heard back from the university as to whether they had been granted, despite the deadline looming. What were they to do, submit the assignment anyway…?
Read more on our Higher Education Law Solicitors Blog
If you are lucky, most of you will go through your university life without ever experiencing any form of internal university procedure. You will never have cause to appeal an academic grade/mark, you will never need to defend yourself when the university accuses you of academic misconduct (which can be anything from fabrication of results to plagiarism), your university will never attempt to throw you off the course because they deem you unfit, you will never have cause to complain, you will never need the university to give you some leeway because something significant has happened in your life and you will plod along at university just fine.
Charles and Co Solicitors launch specialist education law blog. The blog covers a wide spectrum of higher education matters including advising students on a range of internal university procedure
View the Higher Education Law blog here
The recent suspensions of students following various university protests has highlighted that, when a university decides to discipline students in accordance with their disciplinary regulations, two fundamentals are important. Firstly, the university should follow their own regulations (which should be clear and fair). Secondly, the regulations provide a sufficient mechanism for unilateral decisions to be challenged. These are the fundamental principles of any just society.
Singling out a few students to suspend with immediate effect is only going to further alienate your population and unite them in their cause. My experience in higher education law has shown all too often that universities respond to on campus events in a reactionary manner. They can fail to diligently consider their internal regulations and in turn fail to ensure that what they are doing is in accordance with their own policies.
I have too often come across regulations that allow vice-chancellors, university councils, registrars, university secretaries to exercise certain powers, but then no clear provision being put in place to allow for that power to be challenged. Some can fail to even follow the procedures set out in their own regulations and by the time such improper decisions are reviewed or overturned students have suffered significantly.
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Anyone who has ever been involved in the Fitness to…
- Academic Appeal
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- Fitness to Practise
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- New Website Launch
- Office of the Independent Adjudicator
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- Student Union Advice
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