Carolyn advises families on how to manage their children’s education, can offer support and guidance when things start to go wrong and assist in managing relationships with schools and the local authority to avoid school exclusion or Tribunal litigation. She will act for families before School Governors and Independent Review Panels, Admissions Appeals Panels and will pursue complaints to the Local Government Ombudsman, Ofsted, Young People’s Learning Board or Education Funding Agency.
Carolyn is a trained Mediator and will support parents through the mediation process to actively reach settlements in support packages and placement under Education Health and Care Plans and will take cases to the Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND) First Tier and Upper Tribunal.
Carolyn acts for children and young people who are out of school and challenges Local Authorities in relation to their duty to educate sick and vulnerable children and children unable to gain access to a school place by way of Judicial Review where necessary.
Carolyn joins Steel and Shamash having previously worked as the Senior Lawyer at an innovative Young Peoples Legal Practice; Streetwise Community Law Centre where she took on several ground breaking cases and received a Highly Commended Law Society Excellence Award in 2012 for her work in the field of Education Law. Prior to this Carolyn spent 10 years specialising in Child Care and Criminal Defence work and worked as a Court and Police Station Duty Solicitor and freelance Advocate. She has spent most of her professional life supporting vulnerable families and children, and keeps her client and their desired outcome at the heart of her practice.