Judicial Review into new plan insisting all new police officers should have a degree is dismissed on technicality

Lincolnshire Chief Constable Bill Skelly. EMN-190512-181657001
Lincolnshire Chief Constable Bill Skelly. EMN-190512-181657001

The Chief Constable of Lincolnshire, Bill Skelly has been denied a full judicial review of the College of Policing’s plan to impose the Police Education Qualifications Framework (PEQF) on all forces which means that new recruits will either have to have a degree or agree to study for one once they are appointed.

With the full support of Police and Crime Commissioner, Marc Jones, Mr Skelly had asked for a Judicial Review for a stay of implementation of PEQF until the summer of 2023.

“I wanted to give time for a legitimate evaluation of the new system being imposed across the country and for the results to be assessed and any adjustments made,” he said. Today’s (Thursday) hearing considered when the College of Policing made its decision – it claimed it was November 2018 whilst Lincolnshire Police claimed it was May 2019.

Mr Skelly said he was disappointed that the judge had allowed the judicial review to be dismissed on a technicality related to timing.

“We submitted a detailed challenge on the merits of the PEQF and the insufficient preparation that has been undertaken by the College of Policing,” he said. “Unfortunately, the College chose to ignore the merits of our concerns and sought to strike out the legal case on a technicality.”

Mr Skelly said he was now considering whether further legal action should be taken forward.

“This remains a serious option for Lincolnshire Police as the impact of PEQF is so disastrous and means the effective removal of 40 frontline officers,” he said. “This is a loss of police officers that cannot be afforded and it would create a harmful impact on policing in the county.”

Mr Skelly said he expected to be in a position to make a more detailed statement following the General Election.