Senior Teaching Fellow in Child and Family Law

Disability Officer

Qualifications: LL.B Dip LP Solicitor (non-practising)


Katy Macfarlane started off her career as a secondary school teacher of Economics and Accounting for seven years. She then graduated with an LL.B from Edinburgh University in 1992. From 1999 to 2007, she headed up the Scottish Child Law Centre. Katy is a qualified solicitor, Safeguarder for the Children’s Hearing System, Reporter in Family Law Actions in Edinburgh Sheriff Court and trained and experienced mediator. Between 2002 and 2007, Katy lectured and taught courses on the LL.B, Diploma in Professional Legal Practice (DPLP) and Trainee Continuing Professional Development (TCPD) before being appointed as a Teaching Fellow in the Law School in 2008 and a Senior Teaching Fellow in 2014.

Katy’s particular area of interest is Child and Family Law.  She teaches on the Family Law Ordinary, Employment Law Ordinary and Labour Law Honours courses at undergraduate level. She also teaches on the FSRS and Principles of Accounting courses and is Course Organiser for the Elective in Child law on the postgraduate DPLP.  She is a Personal Tutor, Tutor Mentor for all undergraduate Ordinary course tutors and is Disability Officer for the Law School.

Past and Current Legal Work
Co-editor of Family Law Bulletin, published by W Green (2013 to present)                     Currently annotating the Children’s Hearings (S) Act 2011 for W Green;
Supervisor for Division C (Child Law) of the Social Work Statutes, published by W Green (2012-2014);
External examiner for the Domestic Relations and Family Law Honours courses for Strathclyde University Law School (2011 to 2015)
Contributor to Greens Weekly Digest from 1992-2000 

I am, or have been, a member of the:  Justice for Children Group (monitoring the Vulnerable Witnesses (S) Act 2004) (2004 to present)
Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights (2002-2007);
Scottish Government’s UNCRC Group (2005-2007);
Education Advisory Group for the Govan Law Centre’s Education Law Unit (2004-2007)
Scottish Government’s Research Group on Understanding Child Contact Cases (2005-2007)

Female Genital Mutilation - Be FGM Aware Fam LB 2014, 130 (July) 3-4                         Social Work and the Law in Scotland, Edited by D. Baillie, K Cameron, L, Cull, J Roache and J West (The Open University, 2003)
Various legal articles for Youth Matters (the bi-annual publication for the Scottish Child Law Centre) 

Papers and Presentations                                                                                    

Judicial Institute:  Family Law and Mediation                                                          Presentation Title:  "Cohabitation" (April 2015)                                                         

Scottish Child Law Centre:  Children's Hearings (S) Act 2011 - One Year On Presentation Title:  "The Role of the Safeguarder" (May 2014) 

CLT: Family Law Conference                                                                               Presentation Title: "Changes in the Children's Hearings System (October 2013) 

Scottish Child Law Centre:  Children's Hearings (S) Act 2011 - The Changes and the Challenges  Presentation Title:  "Safeguarders and Legal Representatives (Feb 2013)                                                                                                                             University of the West of Scotland/NHS Lanarkshire:  Lost in Transition Conference
Presentation Title – “Consent and Confidentiality – Children’s Rights in Surgical, Medical and Dental Decisions” (Jun 2011)                                                                                             

Central Law Training Education Update Conference
Presentation Titles – “The Legal Implications of School Trips”, and
“Mediation in Education Matters” (Sept 2010)                                                                                                                                 Govan Law Centre Education Law Unit
Presentation Title – “School Outings and Trips – The Legal Consequences” (Jan 2010) 

Holyrood Conferences:  Bullying and Victimisation
Presentation Title – “Bullying in School – the Remedies?” (Dec 2005)                                    

City of Edinburgh Council Education Department – Conference for Teachers on Education (Additional Support for Learning (S) Act 2004 (Nov 2005)                                                                                                      
Holyrood Conferences – Youth Justice – Co-operative Solutions to Offending
Presentation Title – “Antisocial Behaviour (S) Act 2004 – Is it HR Compliant?” (Jan 2005)  







Courses Taught

Employment law (Ordinary) (Course Organiser)

Family Law (Ordinary) (Ordinary) (Course Organiser)

Family Law/Child law (CPLS-E) (Course Organiser)

Labour Law (Honours)

Mental Health Law (Honours) (Course Organiser)