Public Schools

News & Analysis as of

Pullman & Comley’s 2016-17 Superintendents’ Legal Issues Forum – Session One Recap

Pullman & Comley’s 2016-17 Superintendents’ Legal Issues Forum got off to a great start with a thought provoking presentation by Mark Sommaruga and Zach Schurin regarding a summary of 2016 Connecticut legislative enactments...more

Food and Nutrition Service of the USDA Releases New Rule Regarding School Wellness Policies

The Food and Nutrition Service of the United States Department of Agriculture has released its final rule regarding Local School Wellness Policies under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. All local school wellness...more

What Charter Schools Need to Know About the 2016 Public Records Law Overhaul

Legislation overhauling the state's public records law was recently signed by Governor Baker. The provisions of the act take effect on January 1, 2017, and the Secretary of State's office is expected to release new...more

Connecticut Court Orders Major Overhaul of Primary and Secondary Education Policies

On September 7, 2016, a Connecticut trial court in Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding, Inc. v. Rell, ordered the state to implement major reforms to its education policies. More than a decade ago, a...more

National Anthem Protests: How Should Schools, Colleges, And Universities Respond?

It’s the night of the big game. Parents, students, and fans fill the stands. The marching band takes the field, but as the band begins to play the national anthem, the football team’s star player drops to one knee – similar...more

Superior Court Judge Rules Connecticut Education System Unconstitutional

On Wednesday, September 7, 2016, Hartford Superior Court Judge Thomas G. Moukawsher ruled in the case of Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding v. Rell, x07 HHD 14-5037565-S, that the current Connecticut...more

CAS Legal Mailbag Question of the Week – September, 2016

Dear Legal Mailbag: The beginning of the year is an exciting time, but there are always some students who don’t show up for the party. To be sure, we try to track them down by attempting to contact their parents with...more

Pokémon, No!

There is something a little bit different about going back to school this year: your school is filled with Pokémon, awaiting capture by your students, employees, and visitors. By now, you are probably familiar with Pokémon...more

Legal Update: U.S. Department of Education Guidance - Rights of Homeless Children and Youths under McKinney-Vento as Amended by...

Under McKinney-Vento, LEAs must ensure homeless children and youths have equal access to the same free, appropriate public education – including a public preschool education – as provided to other children and youths. U.S....more

Connecticut Unaffected by Federal Court Order Forbidding Enforcement of Transgender Guidance

Recently, a federal district court in Texas sided with Texas and several other states that challenged federal guidance instructing schools to accommodate transgender students under federal anti-discrimination laws. The...more

Get Ready for the Changing Landscape of Expulsions

The legislature, this year, put in place significant changes relative to the expulsion of students which will supposedly go into effect on August 15, 2017. Assuming that the legislature leaves intact these changes during the...more

New Complaint Challenges Constitutionality of Connecticut Educational System

On August 23, 2016, four Connecticut parents, on behalf of themselves and their seven children, filed a 71-page complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut against Governor Dannel Malloy and...more

Sustainable Development Update - August 2016 #5

Sustainable Development Focus - More electric cars, more solar power expected as state struggles to reach tough new climate standards - San Jose Mercury News - Aug 28 - Under a landmark bill sent to Governor...more

Arbitration Award Reinstating Teacher Charged With “Grooming” of Student Reversed by Court

Cornwall – Lebanon School District v. Cornwall – Lebanon Education Association, Court of Common Pleas of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania No. 2015-01556 (April 21, 2016). Common Pleas Court vacates Arbitrator’s award reinstating...more

FCC Rules that Informational Automated Messages Sent by Schools to Parent Cell Phones Do Not Violate the Federal Telephone...

In the Matter of Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (Petition of Blackboard, Inc.), CG Docket No. 02-278 (August 2016). The FCC confirms that schools may send informational...more

Department of Education Issues New Dear Colleague Letter Regarding the Enrollment of Homeless Students

On July 27, 2016, the United States Department of Education (“Department of Education”) released a dear colleague letter (DCL) and a non-regulatory guidance document (“Guidance Document”) discussing school districts’...more

Bad Teacher Reinstated Because District Did Not Follow Proper Termination Procedures

School Dist. of Philadelphia v. Jones, 139 A.3d 358 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2016). In order to terminate a teacher, a school district must strictly follow procedural requirements under the Pennsylvania School Code. In Jones, a...more

Zoning Law Applicable to School Districts Signed into Law

On August 25, 2016, Governor Rauner signed into law Public Act 99-890, which is the result of an effort by the education community to temper the effect of the recent Supreme Court decision in Gurba v. Community High School...more

Monthly TCPA Digest - August 2016

In light of the continued compliance and litigation challenges presented by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), Mintz Levin’s TCPA and Consumer Calling Practice team have launched an inaugural newsletter to keep you...more

IRS Relaxes Restrictions on Management Contracts for Bond-Financed Facilities

The IRS on August 22, 2016 released long-anticipated Revenue Procedure 2016-44 (Rev. Proc. 2016-44), which substantially increases flexibility in, and provides a less formulaic approach to, the ability of a tax-exempt bond...more

Construction and Infrastructure Update, August 2016

Is it the Dawning of the Age of Strict Products Liability for California Contractors? Strict liability products liability - whereby manufacturers and distributors of a defective product can be found liable to a consumer...more

California Ballot 2016: Pros and Cons of Props 51-56

Californians must decide on 17 initiatives in the November election this year, and those are just the proposed measures of state-wide concern. Never mind the many local initiatives affecting counties and neighborhoods. The...more

DOE Dear Colleague Letter Advises Districts To Consider Whether IEPs of Students Experiencing Short-Term Disciplinary Removals...

On August 1, 2016, the United States Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services and Office of Special Education Programs issued a Dear Colleague Letter suggesting that, in many cases, a...more

D.H. v. Clayton County School District - A Federal Appeals Court Reaffirms New Jersey v. TLO

In the light of Riley v. California and United States v. Wurie, which imposed a warrant requirement for the search of cellular phones incident to lawful arrest, some legal commentators believed the courts were poised to...more

Gavin Grimm v. Glouchester County School Board—Is the Supreme Court Finally Weighing in on the Transgender Bathroom Debate?

On August 3, 2016, the United States Supreme Court granted a stay to a Virginia school Board pending Supreme Court review of the case. In an action reminiscence of the same sex marriage controversy, the Supreme Court's...more

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