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Brechtje Paijmans appointed as endowed professor at Leiden University

Stichting Onderwijsgeschillen (Foundation for Educational Disputes) is pleased to announce that it has established an endowed chair ‘Conflictoplossing en rechtsbescherming in het onderwijs' (conflict resolution and legal protection in education) at Leiden University.

Brechtje Paijmans

Education is crucial in society and the field of education is constantly changing. Legal protection of pupils, parents, participation councils and employees of educational institutions deserves full attention, as does conflict resolution. As a result of the need in society for legal knowledge and expertise as well as input in relation to this at an academic level, the Stichting Onderwijsgeschillen and Leiden University have established this chair.

Starting 1 November 2022, Brechtje Paijmans is appointed as endowed professor for a period of five years (0.4 FTE). As a lawyer and scholar, she specialises in education law and liability law. In her position as professor, she will study from the broad discipline of education law:

  1. which practices in dispute resolution contribute to qualitative and sustainable solutions in conflicts in education, and
  2. how the accessibility of legal protection in education can be improved.

Paijmans will be working at the Department of Child Law within the Institute of Private Law at Leiden University. She will work together with researchers from the research project Institutions for Conflict Resolution, as well as setting up and teaching the course onderwijsrecht (education law) within the master’s programme Jeugdrecht (Child Law).

Brechtje Paijmans says she is 'very honoured and delighted' to be appointed endowed professor. 'This new chair offers an excellent opportunity to actively contribute to conflict resolution and legal protection in education. Obviously through research and teaching, but also for example by building a knowledge network for and through education'.

Cécile de Vos, managing director at Stichting Onderwijsgeschillen, is looking forward to Paijmans' professorship. 'Onderwijsgeschillen handles between 600 and 700 cases in education every year. We are looking forward to the contribution Brechtje Paijmans will make to conflict resolution and legal protection in education in general, and the quality of our work in particular. To this end, she will also be responsible for the programme management of Expertisecentrum - Onderwijsgeschillen [Centre of Expertise - Educational Disputes] together with Paul Zoontjens from now on.'

Ton Liefaard, Head of the Department of Child Law: 'With the arrival of Brechtje Paijmans, our teaching and research in the field of child law and international children's rights can be explicitly linked to education law and related disciplines. We are very much looking forward to the collaboration and also see this as an opportunity to connect with other departments within the Institute of Private Law and the Faculty.'

Brechtje Paijmans (1975) studied primary education teacher-training for two years before transferring to Utrecht University where she graduated in Dutch Law and Notarial Law. She has been a lawyer since 2002 and has worked part-time at Utrecht University since 2006. There, her interest in education resurfaced and she conducted PhD research on the duty of care of schools, for which she was awarded a doctorate in 2013. Paijmans specialised as a lawyer in education law and liability law and, until her appointment, was also an honorary associate professor at Utrecht University's Centre for Accountability and Liability Law (UCALL). She is also editor-in-chief of the journal School en Wet and a member of the editorial board of the journal Maandblad voor Vermogensrecht.

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