Case No: CO/4296/2022
In the High Court of Justice
King’s Bench Division
25 November 2022
The Honourable Mrs Justice Lang DBE
The King on the application of OBJ
(by his mother and litigation friend, VJ)
Hertfordshire County Council
Bushy Meads School
On the Claimant’s application for an anonymity order, abridgement of time for filing an Acknowledgment of Service, expedition and interim relief;
Following consideration of the documents lodged by the Claimant
- Pursuant to CPR r.39.2, in any report of these proceedings, there shall be no publication of the name and address of the Claimant, his litigation friend, and his parents, nor any other particulars likely to lead to their identification. In the proceedings, the Claimant shall be anonymised and referred to as “OBJ”, his mother and litigation friend shall be anonymised and referred to as “VJ”, and the Claimant’s father as “IJ”.
- Time for filing the First and Second Defendants’ Acknowledgments of Service is abridged to 9 December 2022.
- The First and Second Defendants shall include in their Summary Grounds of Resistance a full response to the Claimant’s Statement of Facts and Grounds, and the application for interim relief.
- The First Defendant do file and serve a witness statement setting out the relevant factual history, and its response to the application for interim relief, by 9 December 2022.
- The Second Defendant do file and serve a witness statement setting out the relevant factual history, and its response to the application for interim relief, by 9 December 2022.
- There will be an oral hearing of the application for permission to apply for judicial review, and the application for interim relief, which is to be expedited so as to be listed as soon as possible from 14 December 2022 onwards. Time estimate: 2½ hours.
- Liberty to apply to vary or discharge this order on 2 days’ notice to the other party.
- Costs in the case.
The Claimant is a protected party, by reason of his disability and lack of capacity. There is a significant and legitimate interest in his personal details not being published which justifies a departure from the general principle of open justice.
The Claimant’s educational provision has been curtailed by the Second Defendant, which is the school named in his Education Health and Care Plan (“EHCP”) since at least 2016. He has been out of school since September 2022 and no alternative provision has been made for him.
The Claimant seeks urgent interim relief, pending the final hearing, by way of an order requiring the First Defendant to secure the provision in the Claimant’s EHCP and for the Second Defendant to re-admit him to school.
I acknowledge the urgency of the claim, but I consider that the Claimant’s proposed timetable is unrealistic, in the light of the volume of urgent cases in the Administrative Court, and the need to give the Defendants a fair opportunity to respond before a decision is made.
I consider the timetable set out above to be fair and realistic. It may not be possible to accommodate counsel’s convenience when fixing the hearing date.