JR17 for Judicial Review (Northern Ireland): SC 23 Jun 2010

The appellant was excluded from school. A female pupil related her fear of him to a teacher, but would not make a formal complaint, and the appellant was not to be told of the report or the investigation of it. There was said to have been confusion between suspension, exclusion and expulsion. The court was asked whether what happened was a suspension, on what grounds, did the head have the power so to act, and was there a breach of article 2. The courts below had found the suspension to be precautionary rather than disciplinary.
Held: It was clear that the head had both precautionary and disciplinary reasons for the suspension, however overall the evidence suggested suspension on disciplinary grounds. On such grounds he had power to act to suspend the applicant. Nevertheless the decision was made to suspend the student without giving him either any opportunity to comment or indeed the details of the allegation, and it was clearly insupportable on either basis, and the suspension was unlawful.

Lord Phillips, President, Lord Rodger, Lady Hale, Lord Brown, Sir John Dyson SCJ
[2010] UKSC 27, [2010] NI 105, [2010] UKHRR 984, (2010) 13 CCL Rep 357
Summary, SC, SC Summary, Bailii
European Convention on Human Rights 82
Northern Ireland
Appeal fromJR17’s Application No. 1 (Education)- Appeal CANI 26-Feb-2009
. .
CitedRe M’s application CANI 2004
The court spoke of the practical need for a power for a school to suspend as a precautionary measure: ‘We consider that it is entirely proper for a principal to suspend a pupil who may face the prospect of expulsion if the allegations made against . .
CitedAli v Head Teacher and Governors of Lord Grey School HL 22-Mar-2006
The claimant had been accused with others of arson to school property. He was suspended for the maximum forty five day period. The school then invited the family to discuss arrangements to return to the school, but the family did not attend. After . .
CitedLeyla Sahin v Turkey ECHR 29-Jun-2004
(Grand Chamber) The applicant had been denied access to written examinations and to a lecture at the University of Istanbul because she was wearing an Islamic headscarf. This was prohibited not only by the rules of the university but also by the . .
CitedSahin v Turkey ECHR 6-Dec-2005
ECHR Judgment (Merits and Just Satisfaction) – Violation of Art. 6-1; No separate issue under Art. 6; Violation of Art. 10; Non-pecuniary damage – financial award; Costs and expenses partial award – Convention . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Education, Human Rights

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.417705