I was a litigation Solicitor for over 20 years. Graduating with a BSC in Linguistics and International Studies (Law, French Law and Linguistics) from the University of Surrey, I became a Solicitor in 1993. My career was varied. I worked within large and small practices undertaking insurance litigation, injury and professional negligence, stress claims and foreign law claims. These cases were for Claimants and Defendants in the County Court, High court and Court of Appeal. I became a partner at the age of 34 with responsibilities for my own department and overseeing another one.
Specific Educational Needs
Mum to 2 neurodivergent young people I have had to battle for education appropriate to their special educational needs. I became interested in Education Law when my son was first diagnosed in 2001. Several Tribunal appeals were necessary for my son. All successful. I retained my interest in education law as I fought for their changing needs over the years and also helped friends with SEN matters.Today my son is a graduate with a first class degree working as a business analyst in the City.
Finally, in 2017 I decided to retrain in this area. I continue to apply my legal skills learned through many years working in the Courts with evidence. Evidence is key to success in SEND matters. You can only succeed with the supporting evidence. I have been advising parents through various charities since 2017. I have worked as a Family Support Officer within a specialist provider at a school and colleges. I continue to volunteer for SOSSEN.
What I offer
I offer a broad range of services: advice and support for parents and carers with applications for assessments, appeals, EHCP checks, review of evidence and school meetings.
To keep my advice affordable I have chosen not to maintain my practising certificate as a Solicitor to reduce my overheads. I am not offering a legal service. My aim is to provide advice and support and facilitate the parent to undertake some of the work themselves. This means that they are not paying a solicitor to make endless calls or write letters. I hold professional indemnity liability insurance.
In 2018 I and a friend set up Lavender Group for neurodiverse girls. I take an active interest in neurodiversity and consider myself an advocate for neurodiversity. In May 2019 with Lavender Girls, I organised an event to Celebrate Neurodiversity with a range of speakers from different backgrounds. As a parent, I know how important it is that our young people who have SEN are able to see beyond the label and can have high aspirations.
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I am also the former acting chair of Lambeth Autism Group and ran an ADHD support line for several years. During a review of local SEN provision l lobbied councillors and the NHS around parent partnership, tribunal statistics, and the waiting list for Autism assessments- as a result the waiting time was reduced.