The future of the leading London comprehensive Holland Park School was the subject of a Judicial Review in the High Court yesterday. A group of parents and the National Education Union are challenging the consultation process followed by the Department of Education which culminated in its decision to subsume Holland Park School into a Multi-Academy Trust with United Learning Trust.
The main issue in the case is whether the DfE carried out a public consultation which was subject to public law (so-called Gunning) requirements. The DfE wrote to parents and teachers outlining its proposal to transfer the school to a MAT. It asked for stakeholders’ views in relation to the potential transfer of Holland Park to ULT . The legal issues are whether there was, in fact, a public law consultation and if so, whether that consultation was lawful. Mrs Justice Henrietta Hill has reserved judgment.