Related to: Public School

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DPI Upholds Expulsions Based on “Threats” Outside of School

Last week, the Department of Public Instruction (DPI), issued two groundbreaking decisions upholding expulsions based on threats of shootings. The DPI’s decisions find that, under certain circumstances, threats occurring outside of school, including during the summer break or even while a student is enrolled in a private school, may still serve as a basis for…

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5 Tips for Responding to Reports of Bullying

As National Bullying Prevention Month draws to a close, it is important to reflect on the legal requirements and best practices for addressing reports of bullying and harassment. Effectively responding to reports of bullying and harassment is critical, not only for protecting the safety and wellbeing of the students, but also for protecting the school…

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Transgender Student Case Appealed to Fourth Circuit Court (Again!)

There have been new developments in G.G. v. Gloucester, the case involving a transgender student that was previously before the U.S. Supreme Court. As reported in our previous Legal Updates, this case began in 2015 after a school district adopted a policy stating that the use of boys’ and girls’ restroom and locker rooms “shall…

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Is Your School’s Use of Technology in the Classroom Violating FERPA?

With each year, technology plays a more significant role in schools and classrooms.  For example, most school districts use a web-based student information system to manage student data and share that data with parents and school staff.   In addition, if a school district provides a 1:1 device to students, such as an iPad or Chromebook,…

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Can a Student Be Expelled for Threatening School Violence?

School districts are increasingly confronted with threats of school violence made by students, and in light of national events, they are right to take them seriously.  Oftentimes, the question arises of whether such conduct is subject to expulsion. Can a School District Expel a Student for Threatening School Violence? Yes.  Section 120.13(1)(c)1. of the Wisconsin…

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OCR Issues Internal Guidance Narrowing Scope of Complaints & Investigations (Including Complaints Involving Transgender Students)

June 16, 2017 – As part of its endeavor to shift power from federal government to state and local governments and communities, the Trump Administration has been reviewing the role of the Department of Education and the Office for Civil Rights. On April 26, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order which directs Education Secretary…

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transgender Title IX

Texas Judge Temporarily Blocks OCR’s Enforcement of its Position on Transgender Students

Earlier today, Federal District Court Judge Reed O’Connor of the Northern District of Texas issued a preliminary injunction in  State of Texas et al. v. United States of America et al. This case began when thirteen states and agencies, including the State of Wisconsin, filed a lawsuit alleging that the interpretation of “sex” in the joint…

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Departments Issue Joint Guidance on Transgender Students

On May 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division issued a joint guidance document regarding transgender students. The guidance, which is not in the form of a regulation but rather a Dear Colleague Letter, states, “The Departments interpret Title IX to require…

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Checklist for Students Admitted to Mental Health Treatment Facility

As we celebrate National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day today, it is important to reflect upon the legal requirements and best practices relating to the education of children with mental health disorders. This is a complex matter, as it involves the intersection of legal issues, educational issues, and medical issues. A child’s mental health disorder…

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Federal Court of Appeals Allows Transgender Student’s Title IX Claim to Move Forward, Defers to DOE’s Interpretation of Title IX Regulations

Last week, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower court’s decision dismissing a transgender student’s Title IX discrimination claim against his school district. Notably, the Fourth Circuit deferred to the Department of Education’s interpretation of the Title IX regulations in making its decision. Because the Fourth Circuit is the highest court to have…

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