Principals' Legal Service of Aotearoa

The Principals' Legal Service provides principals and nominated senior leaders of public or integrated, composite and secondary schools access to the legal assistance they need on management issues. 

An annual school membership of the service can be used by up to three of the principal and senior leadership team. 

All users of the service must be a member of a union that covers composite (area) or secondary schools, either NZEI Te Riu Roa, PPTA Te Wehengarua or SPANZ union.  

The service will provide initial legal advice and assistance on management issues through McBride Davenport James. This will usually take the form of a 15-minute consult, plus a review of documents if necessary. 

Management issues may include: 

  • Student disciplinary matters including stand-down and suspension 
  • Employment, competency, discipline and complaints processes 
  • Parent complaints, enrolment schemes 
  • Privacy and Human Rights matters 
  • Ombudsman enquiries/complaints 

If the matter is unresolved after initial support has been provided the board/principal may choose to pursue the matter further through an insurance provider or via private arrangements. Advice can also be used in conjunction with or to complement advice from the New Zealand School Trustees Association. 

Annual membership of $600(plus GST) will be available from Term 4 


Join the Principals' Legal service here


Who will provide the legal advice? 

McBride Davenport Jamesemployment law team is recognised as a New Zealand leader in this field. The team is led by Partners Paul McBride and Guido Ballara, and includes Senior Associate Frances Lear and Solicitors Saadi Radcliffe and Emma Rose Luxton. We work as a team to approach issues confronting our clients, and provide a very high level of expertise, service, and practical advice. 

The Principals’ Legal Service is provided by the Advisory Services Trust which was established by the PPTA and SPC.  

Last modified on Friday, 5 November 2021 09:13