World law expert praises one of Britain’s best school-based sixth forms

By Jill Dando News

A global expert on the law and driverless cars has praised one of Britain’s best school-based sixth forms.

Dr Matthew Channon, of the University of Exeter, was full of praise for the The King Alfred School Academy sixth form Form Law and Criminology Society during a Zoom workshop. 

The Highbridge based sixth form in Somerset is one of the best school-based sixth forms in the country, with a thriving law society.

Dr Channon is co-author of the world’s first textbook on ‘The Law and Autonomous Vehicles.

He said: “Of all the schools and colleges I’ve visited, I’ve never come across a sixth Form Law Society before – this is excellent preparation for university and a career in law.”

The sixth form Law and Criminology Society is run by President Millie Dinham and Vice President Ryan Morgan who help organise events that help prepare fellow Year 12 students for a variety of career pathways into law. 

Millie, pictured above, said: “Participating in fascinating events like this with Dr Channon helps us appreciate different ways of interpreting the law”. 

Dr Channon set the group of Year 12 students the challenge of deciding who is liable when there is an accident involving an autonomous vehicle – the pedestrian and victim who was distracted by their mobile phone, the driver who wasn’t paying much attention either, or the manufacturer of the malfunctioning vehicle which should have stopped in time? 

The students engaged in a lively debate and were able to make an argument for all three cases.

Ryan, pictured below, said: “I’m not sure whether to take the university or apprenticeship route into law at the moment so these different experiences in the 6th Form Law Society will help inform my choice next year.”

The students are currently preparing for next year’s Bar Mock Trial Competition at Bristol Crown Court where the team will both defend and prosecute various criminal cases presided over by a circuit judge.

Members play the roles of advocate, court clerk, witness, juror, court reporter and court artist. 

TKASA Sixth Form has a formal link with the University of Exeter from whom students receive contextual offers and interested students participate in their Pathways to Law programme.

This includes work placements and an introduction to the English legal system. 

Jonathan Gaskell, the Head of sixth form, said: “This is an exciting time to be joining TKASA sixth form. 

“Our study centre is being extended and refurbished ready for September 2021 when record numbers of outstanding students are expected to join one of the most successful sixth forms in the region.”

The sixth form is still welcoming applications – interested Year 11 students should contact JGaskell@tkasa.org.uk 

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