Higher Education

We have extensive experience acting for a large number of leading educational establishments, including three of the four Ancient Universities in Scotland.

Our Higher Education team has a long history of acting for a large number of leading establishments across the education sector, including state and independent schools, further education colleges, and universities.

The team comprises leading lawyers with relevant expertise from across the firm, from charities, governance and pensions, employment and immigration, to commercial, GDPR, property and construction specialists.

We provide strategic and expert advice to guide institutions through any issue they face, no matter how complex or sensitive. We ensure our advice is solution-focused and provides practical recommendations on how best to proceed. We work in genuine partnership with our clients, building long-term trusted adviser relationships with them to best understand their objectives and help them achieve their goals.

Our specialisms include:

  • Advising on employee relations matters, including Trade Union recognition, collective bargaining, managing strikes and action short of strikes
  • Discrimination matters involving both staff and students
  • Unfair dismissal and other Employment Tribunal claims
  • Dealing with allegations of bullying and harassment
  • Academic Freedom
  • Research and other misconduct
  • Advising on contracts and other legal and regulatory issues for employees working abroad
  • Pensions
  • Hiring non-UK national employees
  • Advising in relation to non-UK student issues
  • Acting for local authorities, funders or developers building new schools
  • Acting for student accommodation providers
  • Acting for parties in disputes regarding PFI contracts
  • Assisting with spin-outs and restructuring
  • Mergers, acquisitions and disposals
  • Research contracts and funding agreements
  • GDPR, privacy and subject access requests
  • Impact of Artificial Intelligence
  • Protecting and commercialising IP
  • Advising on legacy and donation issues
  • Advising on Charitable Trustee duties
  • Compliance with procurement and other regulatory requirements
  • Student disciplinary matters
  • Compliance with, and making changes to, Ordinances
  • Election, roles and responsibilities of Senior Governors