One of my cases was featured in The Herald today, under the heading “Council failed parents over headteacher appointments.” The article sets out the Scottish Government‘s formal response to complaints by parent councils in Glasgow about a failure by the Council to consult with them regarding the appointment of headteachers.
The relevant law is found in the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006 – s.14 requires that in relation to the posts of headteacher and deputy headteacher, the “appointment process must entail involvement in it of any Parent Council established for the school to which an appointment is to be made.” The detail of that involvement can be found in the suitably named Parental Involvement in Headteacher and Deputy Headteacher Appointments (Scotland) Regulations 2007 and – critically – involves a measure of pre-appointment consultation in relation to recruitment strategy and job or person specification even where the post is to be filled by internal redeployment.
My thoughts on the matter as quoted in The Herald follow:
Iain Nisbet, of the Govan Law Centre, who brought the complaint on behalf of the parents, said the ruling had significant implications.
“This is a very important decision that underlines the importance of parental involvement in school education and shows the legal arguments of the parents were correct all along,” he said.
“The decision is a reminder to councils across Scotland that they cannot simply pay lip service to their duties to consult with parent councils.
“It is also a rebuke to Glasgow City Council, who, from the very beginning, have refused to concede they did anything wrong in acting in this way.”
Mr Nisbet said it was a “great pity” the decision came after the case had been dropped because of lack of support from the Scottish Legal Aid Board.