Author: John Shea

Student Privacy In Online Educational Services

The commercial use of data mined by providers of online educational services, such as Internet homework portals, digital grade books for teachers, and student e-mail programs, continues to be a hot topic on numerous fronts.  On February 26, 2015, the United States Department of Education issued guidance entitled “Protecting Student Privacy While Using Online Educational…

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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 eligibility for, funding incentives under the federal No Child Left Behind Act. As we discussed in a post last summer,…

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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 institutions of higher learning.  In Pacific Lutheran University and SEIU Local 925, the Board exercised jurisdiction under the National Labor Relations Act…

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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 district’s actions have been questioned by some, including the student’s parents, who filed a lawsuit, no one can dispute that…

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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 student utilize a unisex staff bathroom, instead of the communal student bathroom for girls (the gender the student identified with), violated a…

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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 possess an “immense storage capacity” containing “millions of pages of text, thousands of pictures, or hundreds…

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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 funding incentives under, the federal No Child Left Behind Act.  The educators are being tried under Georgia’s Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt…

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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 the form of significant employment benefits. This is the conclusion the Superior Court recently reached in Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities…

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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 program under the Standardized Training and Employment Program and expands an existing child day care licensing exemption to apply to any…

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Feds Revive Efforts to Regulate Seclusion and Restraint

On February 12, 2014 the United States Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions [“HELP”] Committee released the results of its investigation into the use of restraint and seclusion in schools.  Entitled Dangerous Use of Seclusion and Restraints in School Remains Widespread and Difficult to Remedy:  A Review of Ten Cases,  the report contains a discussion…

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