The Woodbridge Teachers’ Arbitration Award – First Interest Arbitration Award of the 2019-20 Teachers’ Negotiation Season

The 2019-20 certified teachers’ and administrators’ negotiation season is just about at the halfway mark.  While, as to be expected, the overwhelming majority of contracts up for negotiation so far have settled at either the negotiation or mediation phases of the Teacher Negotiation Act [“TNA”] process, contract negotiations in several communities have reached binding interest…

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Can There be a “Meeting” Under the FOIA in the Absence of a Quorum? The Appellate Court Just Spoke (but stay tuned).

A common view has been that in the absence of a quorum, a “meeting” of a public agency that would be subject to Connecticut’s Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) cannot occur. For example, the Connecticut Appellate Court previously ruled that a gathering of four members of an eleven-member board of selectmen to discuss procedural strategy…

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Schools Must Take Care to Follow Established Complaint Procedures When Investigating Student Complaints of Sexual Harassment Against Employees In Order to Avoid Potential Liability for Sex Discrimination

In two cases this month, the Federal Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has opined that a college may be found liable for sex discrimination when it acts on allegedly false accusations of sexual impropriety made by students against a faculty member. These cases stress the importance of following internal complaint procedures and completing…

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Are the Records of School Resource Officers or School Security Officers Considered School Records Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”)?

With respect to FERPA and its requirements regarding the disclosure of student records and personally identifiable student information, there are different rules in place for “school security” officials that are based upon their affiliation. Why is it important to determine who a school district’s law enforcement unit is (or if it even has a law…

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HEALTH AND SAFETY EXCEPTION TO FERPA’S CONFIDENTIALITY REQUIREMENTS

In this day and age where, sadly, tragedies have struck numerous schools across the country, the question of when schools are allowed to share personally identifiable student information with law enforcement frequently arises. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) allows schools to share education records when the disclosure is necessary to protect the…

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One more thing from the Connecticut General Assembly: School Construction Bill Passes During a “Special Session”

As you are aware from these pages, Connecticut’s General Assembly produced a plethora of bills affecting the schools during its 2019 regular session.  As they say in late night TV infomercials, yes, there’s more.  In a brief special session that was convened and adjourned on July 22, 2019, the General Assembly passed Senate Bill No.…

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The Aftermath: Developments From The 2019 Session of The Connecticut General Assembly Affecting the Schools

The 2019 Regular Session of the Connecticut General Assembly concluded on June 5, 2019. The legislature passed significant labor and employment legislation that addressed, inter alia, remedies for sexual harassment and employment discrimination and increases in the minimum wage; these bills are summarized in posts on our firm’s labor and employment blog, Working Together.  In addition,…

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“The Aftermath: Developments From The 2019 Session of The Connecticut General Assembly Affecting Employers (Part Two)

As part of a two part post, we recently wrote about the passage of several bills of great importance from the recently concluded 2019 Regular Session of the Connecticut General Assembly addressing, among other things, remedies for sexual harassment and employment discrimination, increases in the minimum wage, and paid family and medical leave. The remaining…

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