Professional discipline specialist Jonathan Storey (instructed by the National Education Union) has last week secured the acquittal of a teacher charged with multiple serious allegations, including drinking alcohol on school premises and breaching professional boundaries concerning a vulnerable pupil in his class.
Jonathan, who was first instructed two years ago, argued numerous points of law in a series of hearings – and engaged one of the country’s leading consultant forensic psychiatrists to provide expert evidence – before the case was finally heard substantively by a panel convened by the Teaching Regulation Agency in May and June 2021. In deciding not to make a finding of unacceptable professional conduct, the panel accepted Jonathan’s submissions that his client’s serious mental illness had contributed significantly to his conduct which was, in the exceptional circumstances of the case, both excusable and forgivable.
Jonathan is a specialist practitioner in the field of professional regulation and works regularly with teachers, nurses, doctors, and other professionals facing disciplinary proceedings at all stages from initial referral to appeal. He is ranked in the leading directories: by Chambers and Partners, in Band 2 for Professional Discipline in the Regions; and by the Legal 500 as a “Rising Star”. His approach combines persuasive advocacy with highly personalised and compassionate advice and expert support throughout the life of a case. Having worked in education, served several schools as a governor, and trained school leaders and lawyers in matters of education law, he is particularly sought after for his expertise in working with teachers and Heads and is regularly instructed by the major teaching unions and privately. He has particular experience of working with highly vulnerable clients and deploying novel legal arguments relating to mental illness.