Pullman & Comley - School Law

850 Main Street P.O. Box 7006
Bridgeport, Connecticut 06601-7006, United States

  • 203-330-2000
  • 203-576-8888

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
| Criminal Law, Education

When The Teacher Is The School Bully

Anti-bullying laws may now have a significant impact on what is considered to be “emotional abuse” in schools. Recently, the Connecticut Supreme Court concluded that a teacher’s bullying behavior toward a student met the legal…more
| Constitutional Law, Education, Personal Injury

Just The Facts: Charter Schools (and Cutting Through Some Myths and Hot Air)

As anyone reading the newspapers can observe, Connecticut charter schools are receiving some unwanted attention these days due to: 1) a myriad of issues involving a charter school management company; and 2) virulent attacks…more
| Education, Elections & Politics

Summertime Blues: T.M. v. Cornwall and The Mainstreaming of Extended-School-Year Programs

In a decision that will likely result in both practical challenges and financial burdens for public school districts, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held in T.M. v. Cornwall Central School District…more
| Civil Rights, Education

Not My Brother’s Keeper: Varley v. Regional School District No. 4 and A School District’s Responsibility For “Free Speech” Claims Involving a Vendor

When entering into contacts with vendors, school districts hope that 1) the vendor will comply with the law, and 2) in any event, the vendor will be responsible for its own employment-related disputes. In Varley v. Regional…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Constitutional Law, Education, Labor & Employment Law

Wells v. Xavier University: Investigating Campus Sexual Assaults and The Perils of Predetermination Under Title IX

The recent wave of Title IX complaints filed with the United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights [“OCR”], claiming that colleges and universities were either ignoring or mishandling reports of sexual…more
| Civil Procedure, Civil Rights, Education

Federal Government Bars Immigration Checks By Schools

The U.S. Departments of Education and Justice have recently issued new guidance – in the form of a “Dear Colleague” letter to school administrators nationwide – barring public schools from conducting immigration checks on…more
| Constitutional Law, Education, Immigration Law

Tales From The Green Room: My FOIA Book, My Television Interview and Why Public Agencies Should Care

On June 7th, 2014, I had the good fortune of being the guest on Focus on Connecticut, which is a weekly, half-hour public affairs show on “News 12 Connecticut.” The show is hosted by Tom Appleby, a veteran news journalist in the…more
| Administrative Law, Communications & Media Law

Doe v. Wolcott: Child Abuse Mandated Reporters and School District Liability

Connecticut General Statute Section 17a-101a sets forth 1) the obligation of certain school employees to report to the Department of Children and Families whenever they have reasonable suspicion of child abuse or neglect. and 2)…more
| Civil Procedure, Education, Personal Injury

How Many Committees Are Public Schools Required to Have?

The Connecticut General Assembly has a fondness for mandating the establishment of committees in public education. In recent years, school districts have been directed to create committees to address bullying, school security…more
| Administrative Law, Education

Vergara v. California: Part Two: Is Tenure in Connecticut At Risk?

As discussed in a prior post, the recent decision in the case of Vergara v. State of California, et al., will, if upheld on appeal, eviscerate California’s public school teacher tenure law. Given that 46 states have some form…more
| Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Education, Labor & Employment Law

Vergara v. California, and the Attenuation of Tenure, Part One: The Decision

In a landmark, June 10, 2014 decision that could set off a wave of similar litigation across the country, a California Superior Court judge ruled in the case of Vergara v. State of California, et al. that a number of…more
| Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Education, Labor & Employment Law

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

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 in…more
| Civil Rights, Labor & Employment Law

Wager v. Moore: When May A College Have A Duty To Protect The Safety Of Its Students?

Generally speaking, from a legal standpoint, the courts have held that colleges and universities do not have a duty to safeguard the safety of their students. However, in Wager v. Moore, 2013 WL 6989512 (Conn. Super. Dec. 18,…more
| Civil Procedure, Education, Personal Injury

Warning-Your E-mail Just Became a Meeting: Mauer v. Member, Board of Education, Regional School District No. 1 and The Dangers of Using The “Send”, “Reply“ and (Especially) “Reply All” Buttons

Often times, I will warn school board members against the use of e-mail to conduct board business. My primary concern is that such e-mails could be deemed to constitute an illegal un-noticed/non-public meeting, in violation of…more
| Administrative Law, Education
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