Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

'Determined' FE colleges

In a recent case, an FE college was determined to be a 'public body' and open to the scrutiny that comes with this.

A claimant sought judicial review against the college on the grounds of grossly unfair operation of disciplinary processes. The college argued that it was not a 'public body' and hence was not open to judicial review.

The court rejected that view. The test of whether a college is a 'public body' is the sources of its power and the functions it fulfils. An FE college was created by statute; its functions were defined by government; and it received substantial government funding. 

Clearly this judgement has implications for other 'independent' educational bodies established under legislation and in receipt of large amounts of government funding.

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