Jackie Wernz

Jackie Wernz

Franczek Radelet P.C.

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New Legislation Leaves Illinois Schools “Locked Out” of Student Social Media Accounts

Recent amendments to Illinois law draw back on rights of post-secondary, secondary, and elementary schools to request or require access to student social networking accounts such as Facebook and Twitter. School districts and...more

9/1/2015 - Cyberbullying Educational Institutions Right to Privacy School Districts Social Media Social Networks

Another Circuit Court Recognizes Schools’ Right to Discipline Students for Off Campus, Online Misconduct

In a recent case, the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit joined four other circuits in recognizing the right of school districts to discipline students for at least some off-campus, online speech if the speech reasonably...more

8/27/2015 - Appeals Disciplinary Proceedings Educational Institutions Facebook Online Platforms School Districts Social Media Social Networks YouTube

School Districts and Charter Schools Must Address Student Data Privacy Concerns in Contracts

In working with school districts and charter schools, our firm has learned that many clients may have entered into agreements that lack key contract terms necessary to protect student data privacy. In other cases, we have...more

8/27/2015 - Charter Schools Data Privacy Data Protection Data-Sharing Educational Institutions Google Personally Identifiable Information School Districts Student Privacy

New Vaccine Requirement for Illinois Students Creates Confusion

Students, parents, and school districts should be mindful of new immunization requirements that go into effect for the 2015-16 school year. The changes include a requirement imposed by Public Act 98-0480 and related...more

8/13/2015 - Educational Institutions Immunization Exemptions Religious Exemption School Districts Students Vaccinations

School Districts Seeing Stars Over New Concussion Legislation

Last week, Governor Rauner signed into law the Youth Sports Concussion Safety Act (Public Act 99-0245) which includes a number of new requirements relating to student concussions for school districts, charter schools, and...more

8/11/2015 - Bodily Injury Charter Schools Compliance Educational Institutions Emergency Response IHSA Parental Consent Private Schools School Districts School Sports Sports Student Athletes

Supreme Court Ruling Avoids Major Complications for Mandatory Reporters

Last week, the United States Supreme Court overturned a controversial decision by the Ohio Supreme Court holding that statements given by a preschool student to his teacher were tantamount to statements to police, and so...more

6/22/2015 - Child Abuse Criminal Prosecution Department of Children and Families (DCF) Mandatory Reporting Laws Miranda Warnings NSBA OH Supreme Court Pre-Schools School Districts SCOTUS Sixth Amendment

NSBA to OCR: Standard for Addressing Requests for Technology by Students With a Communication Impairment is Off Key

Readers of our FR Alerts may remember my colleague Kendra B. Yoch authored an Alert in 2013 about a set of outlier cases in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, K.M. v. Tustin Unified School District and D.H. v. Poway Unified...more

4/13/2015 - ADA Appeals Department of Education DOJ IDEA Public Schools Reasonable Accommodation School Districts

U.S. Department of Education Issues New Guidelines On Collecting Student Data

This past July, the U.S. Department of Education released the Transparency Best Practices for Schools and Districts, a new set of guidelines created to improve relations between school districts and parents surrounding school...more

9/12/2014 - Data Collection Data Protection Department of Education PTAC Public Schools School Districts Students

DOJ and DOE Warning: School Enrollment Practices Must Not Discourage Enrollment of Immigrant Students

According to the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education, U.S. school districts are discouraging student enrollment based on their parents’ illegal immigrant status. The Departments issued guidance, a frequently asked...more

8/21/2014 - Citizenship Citizenship Status Discrimination Department of Education DOJ Final Guidance Immigrants Public Schools School Districts Student Enrollments

Iowa Case Highlights Often Overlooked Risk of Releasing Personal Emails in Public Records Requests

As a frequent advisor to school districts on freedom of information requests, the question I face most often is how a public body can protect a sensitive document from release. ...more

5/29/2014 - Appeals Confidential Information Email Policies FOIA Public Entities Public Records Right to Privacy School Districts

Illinois Appellate Court: School District Not Immune From Liability For Student Fall In “Cafetorium”

The Illinois Appellate Court recently determined that the fact that a school’s “Cafetorium” was used for parties and ceremonies for sports teams and school band, chorus, and drama program performances did not make the...more

4/17/2014 - Governmental Employees Tort Immunity Act Recreation School Districts Slip and Fall

What School Leaders Really Should Know About The Department Of Education’s Guidance On Discriminatory Discipline

Last week, the Department of Education issued a guidance package to help schools administer student discipline without discriminating against students on the basis of race, color, or national origin. The issue of...more

1/16/2014 - Dear Colleague Letter Department of Education Discipline Discrimination School Districts Students

OCR Decision Reminds School Districts To Conduct Prompt, Thorough Investigation Of Student Sexual Harassment And Violence Claims

Mlive.com and the NSBA Legal Clips recently reported that a Michigan School entered into an agreement with the Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) to resolve allegations that the district failed to...more

6/13/2013 - OCR Public Schools School Districts Sexual Assault Sexual Harassment Students

ISBE Regulations And Guidance On Certified School Nurses: Frequently Asked Questions & Answers

In July 2012, ISBE amended its regulations addressing the qualifications required for an individual to conduct medical reviews and make recommendations based on the findings of medical reviews. Medical reviews are conducted...more

1/31/2013 - ISBE Nurses School Districts Special Education

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