John Shea

John Shea

Pullman & Comley, LLC

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Atlanta Educators Face Twenty Years in Prison After Jury Convicts Them of Racketeering

The New York Times reported this Wednesday and Thursday that the jury has convicted eleven of twelve educators of conspiring to alter and inflate student scores on standardized testing utilized to gauge compliance with, and...more

4/3/2015 - Conspiracies Criminal Conspiracy Criminal Prosecution No Child Left Behind Public Schools Racketeering

The NLRB Appears To Clear The Path Toward Greater Unionization Of Private Colleges And Universities

In a decision notable for not just one, but two revisions to established National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) analytical framework, the Board appears to open the door toward increased unionization of private...more

2/23/2015 - Faculty NLRA NLRB Private Schools Religious Exemption Religious Institutions Religious Schools Tenure Unions Universities

CDC Issues Guidance on School Ebola Risk Assessment and Response

Many will recall the recent incident where a Connecticut school district barred a student, who had recently returned from Lagos, Nigeria, from school for twenty-one days due to Ebola concerns. While the propriety of the...more

1/29/2015 - CDC Ebola Interim Guidance Public Schools School Districts

Department of Justice To Assert Title VII Protects Transgender Status

In a memorandum dated December 15, 2014, the United States Attorney General has changed the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) position with respect to the protection of transgender status under Title VII. ...more

1/21/2015 - DOJ EEOC Employer Liability Issues Gender Discrimination Gender Identity Title VII Transgender

Connecticut Supreme Court Rules That A Lying Police Officer Must be Reinstated Because His Lies Were Not “So Egregious.”

Should a police officer who was terminated for lying to the Town of Stratford’s independent physician about his alcohol abuse and epilepsy be permitted to return pursuant to an arbitration panel’s determination that a...more

12/30/2014 - Arbitration Disciplinary Proceedings Employer Liability Issues Law Enforcement Wrongful Termination

Transgender Student Restroom Assignment Revisited

You may recall my colleague Zachary Schurin’s recent discussion of Doe V. Regional School Unit 26. In that matter, the Maine Supreme Court determined that the defendant school district’s requirement that a transgender...more

12/22/2014 - Duty to Accommodate Gender Discrimination Public Schools Transgender

Searching Student Smart Phones in The Wake of Riley V. California

In the recent, landmark case of Riley v. California, the United States Supreme Court held that the police may not search digital data on the cell phone of an arrestee without a warrant, reasoning that smart phones not only...more

11/5/2014 - Cell Phones Evidence Public Schools Reasonableness Factors Riley v California SCOTUS Smartphones Students Warrantless Searches

Georgia Prosecutors To Argue That The Atlanta Public School System Is a Racketeering Enterprise

Jury selection has begun in the criminal trial of 12 Atlanta teachers and administrators accused of conspiring to alter and inflate student scores on standardized testing utilized to gauge compliance with, and eligibility for...more

9/2/2014 - Funding No Child Left Behind Public Schools Racketeering RICO Students Teachers

Alert: Policy Revisions Due to New Laws

This Alert is intended to give a general explanation of 2014 legislative enactments of the Connecticut General Assembly that may impact your board of education policies. For more detailed and individualized assistance with...more

8/28/2014 - Board of Education New Legislation Public Schools State and Local Government

Summary of 2014 Connecticut Legislative Enactments Affecting The Public Schools and Public-Sector Employers

In This Issue: - Interpreters Standards For Students With Hearing Impairments - Preschool And DCF - Health Assessment Forms for Use by Youth Camps and Day Care Providers - English Language Learner...more

8/18/2014 - Public Employees Public Employers Public Schools

Can Watching Grandchildren Entitle Employee To FMLA Leave?

As all employers covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) are well aware, that Act requires them to provide up to 12 weeks of leave to employees providing care to covered family members with a serious health...more

7/22/2014 - Corporate Counsel Employee Rights FMLA

The Supreme Court Says Public Employee’s Court Testimony Protected From Retaliation Under The First Amendment, At Least To The...

Eight years ago the United States Supreme Court, in Garcetti v. Ceballos, instructed that speech undertaken pursuant to a public employee’s job duties is “employee” speech and not “citizen” speech, and hence is not protected...more

6/25/2014 - First Amendment Lane v Franks et.al Protected Activity Public Employees Retaliation SCOTUS Subpoenas Testimony Trials

It’s All In The Benefits — Non-Salary Remuneration Can Render Your Volunteer An “Employee” For Purposes Of The Connecticut Fair...

When is an unpaid volunteer considered an “employee” and thus able to sue for discrimination or retaliation under the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act (“CFEPA”)? The answer: when the volunteer receives remuneration...more

6/10/2014 - Compensation & Benefits Employee Benefits Employee Definition Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Remuneration Volunteers

A Reprieve To Mandatory Implementation Of The Uniform School Calendar

On May 3, 2014, the Connecticut General Assembly passed House of Representatives Bill No. 5559, amending, inter alia, General Statutes Section 10-66q (the bill, as amended and passed, also creates a new apprenticeship grant...more

5/8/2014 - Amended Regulation Collective Bargaining Day Care Licenses Public Employees Public Schools School Districts Training

Dear Colleague Letter Firmly Urges Districts to Abandon “Zero Tolerance” in Student Discipline Policies

The Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education (OCR) and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice recently released a joint “Dear Colleague Letter” (DCL) providing guidance on administering...more

2/14/2014 - Department of Education Discrimination National Origin Discrimination OCR Students Zero Tolerance Policies

Impact of Legislation on BOE Policies

This Alert provides a general explanation of the recent legislative enactments that impact board of education policies. ...more

8/9/2013 - Board of Education Meeting Department of Education New Legislation Public Schools School Safety Security Students

New State Law prohibits Use of “AlertNow” and Other Automated Notification Systems to Communicate the Date, Time and Location of...

As of July 1, 2013 Boards of Education will no longer be allowed to use their AlertNow, e-mail, texting or other automated notification systems to notify parents or guardians of the time, date and location of budget...more

7/2/2013 - Board of Education Meeting Education Budget Email Local Ordinance New Regulations Notifications Robocalling Texting

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