A Capehart Scatchard Blog

Upcoming Seminar at Lehigh University’s 45th Special Education Law Conference

On Friday, May 12, 2017, Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev, Esq. and Cameron R. Morgan, Esq. will be presenting at Lehigh University’s 45th Special Education Law Conference. Their presentations are entitled “Mental Health, Including Therapeutic Placements: Balancing the Law and Family Support” and “Special Education Law 101: The Do’s and Don’ts of Special Education Litigation.” The seminar will be held in Lehigh, Pennsylvania. For additional information and registration, please click here.

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Appellate Division Clarifies Who May Issue Rice Notice to Superintendent

By on April 4, 2017 in Labor & Employment with 0 Comments

In 2013, the Appellate Division ruled that Daniel Woska, a former member of the Brick Township Board of Education (“Board”), exceeded the scope of his authority and violated the New Jersey School Ethics Act (“Act”) when he directed the Business Administrator to issue a Rice notice to the Superintendent. As a result of that Rice notice, the Board discussed the Superintendent’s employment and then terminated him. In the 2013 decision, the Appellate Division remanded the case to the School Ethics Commission (“SEC”) to determine who is authorized to issue a Rice notice for the purposes of reviewing the Superintendent’s employment. […]

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Upcoming Seminar: “Student Records: Legal Requirements You Need to Know”

By on March 30, 2017 in Seminars, Students with 0 Comments

On May 2 and May 5, 2017, Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev, Esq. and Cameron R. Morgan, Esq. will be presenting at the National Business Institute’s seminar entitled “Student Records: Legal Requirements You Need to Know.” They will be speaking about student surveys and physical security of student records. The seminar will be held in Princeton and Atlantic City. For additional information and registration, please click here.

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What You Need to Know About Service Animals in Schools – Part 2

By on March 28, 2017 in Students with 0 Comments

By: Lauren E. Tedesco, Esq. Editor: Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev, Esq. In Part 1 of this series, we discussed what qualifies as a service animal and what types of inquiries a school district is permitted to make. Today, we will discuss the parameters by which a school district may exclude a service animal from school, the responsibility of caring and supervising the animal, allergy and/or fear considerations, and liability insurance. Pursuant to 28 C.F.R. § 35.136 (b), once a school district permits the use of a service animal by a student with a disability, the service animal can only be removed from […]

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U.S. Supreme Court Decides Substantive Standard for FAPE to Special Education Students

By on March 23, 2017 in Special Education/504 with 0 Comments

By: Cameron R. Morgan, Esq. Editor: Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev, Esq. For many months now, those involved in the world of special education have been patiently awaiting the issuance of one of the most important legal decisions in special education in the past 35 years, since the seminal Rowley decision was handed down in 1982. On March 22, 2017, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District, 580 U.S. ___ (2017), in which it confronted the difficult issue of the appropriate substantive standard for determining whether special education students have been provided with […]

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What You Need to Know About Service Animals in Schools – Part 1

By on March 20, 2017 in Students with 0 Comments

By: Lauren E. Tedesco, Esq. Editor: Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev, Esq. More often than not, school administrators face questions relating to requests for service animals to accompany students in school. What is a service animal? Who is allowed to bring a service animal to school? What restrictions may a school impose on the use of a service animal? In this two part series, we will explore these and other issues surrounding the use of service animals in schools. New Jersey school districts must permit access to service animals that accompany students with disabilities. N.J.S.A. 18A:46-13.2 and 13.3 and the Americans with Disabilities […]

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U.S. DOE and DOJ Rescind Guidance Documents Regarding Transgender Students

By on March 15, 2017 in Students with 0 Comments

On February 22, 2017, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice (“Departments”) released a Dear Colleague Letter, which rescinds the May 2016 federal guidance documents regarding the rights of transgender students. The May 2016 guidance documents offered clarification that Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”) prohibits discrimination based on a student’s transgender status and/or gender identity. These previously issued guidance documents explained that school districts cannot require transgender students to use restrooms or locker rooms inconsistent with their gender identity or require them to use individual-user facilities when other students are not required to do so. The recent February 2017 Dear Colleague […]

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N.J. Supreme Court Rules Arbitrator Exceeded Authority in Tenure Case

By on March 6, 2017 in Labor & Employment with 1 Comment

On February 21, 2017, the New Jersey Supreme Court in Bound Brook Board of Education v. Glenn Ciripompa invalided an arbitrator’s award in a tenure removal case after determining that the arbitrator exceeded his authority when he failed to determine whether a teacher’s actions rose to the level of conduct unbecoming. The arbitrator improperly applied the standard for hostile work environment instead of conduct unbecoming. Bound Brook Board of Education (“Board”) filed tenure charges against Glenn Ciripompa, a tenured high school math teacher, after an investigation revealed that he was using school district-issued laptops, iPads, and networks to transmit nude […]

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies Not Required in Non-FAPE Cases

In a long awaited case involving a student requesting the use of a service dog in school, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled on February 22, 2017 in Fry v. Napoleon Community Schools that parents are not required to exhaust administrative remedies under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”) when the heart of their complaint does not allege a denial of a free appropriate public education (“FAPE”). This case involved a student with cerebral palsy who qualified for special education and related services under the IDEA when she attended a public school in Michigan. As a result, she […]

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Appellate Division Further Defines “Promptly Available” Meeting Minutes under OPMA

By on February 21, 2017 in Open Public Meetings Act with 0 Comments

Last week, we reviewed the New Jersey Appellate Division’s ruling in Kean Federation of Teachers v. Board of Trustees of Kean University, which changes a public entity’s obligations regarding Rice notices sent to its employees. You can read last week’s post here. This week, we will examine the Appellate Division’s other decision in the Kean case regarding a public body’s duty under the Open Public Meetings Act (“OPMA”), N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 et seq., to make meeting minutes promptly available. While the OPMA itself does not establish a specific time period for the “promptly available” standard, the Appellate Division found that the […]

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