pound;200m blame claim culture
Claims against schools have reached pound;200 million a year, according to reports, enough to employ 8,000 teachers.
Mr Byers told the "Managing new realities" conference in Birmingham that something was wrong when legal action so badly hit "good quality schools".
"Money is being taken away from educating our children to pay for a compensation system in which the real beneficiaries are the lawyers and accident management companies," he said.
Mr Byers, now working on future Labour policy and the next election manifesto, proposed "no fault" compensation schemes with a financial limit to settlements.