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Student Mental Health and Child Find: An Important Topic for Summer Professional Development

On the heels of national mental health awareness month and as school districts begin planning their summer inservices, it is a perfect time for a refresher on the extent to which schools can and should address the mental health needs of students. Although schools are not mental health care providers, a student’s mental health condition…

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Wisconsin Supreme Court Holds Commute Time in an Employer’s Vehicle is Not Compensable

The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently issued a helpful decision to Wisconsin employers. Following the Supreme Court’s decision in Kieninger v. Crown Equipment Corp., 2019 WI 27, it is now clear ordinary travel time between home and work in an employer owned vehicle is not compensable work time under Wisconsin wage and hour law. Background The…

Recent Supreme Court Decisions Limit Employee Class Actions

In May 2018, we alerted clients to a huge win for employers who utilize individual arbitration agreements with their employees when the United States Supreme Court issued a decision in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis. Through that decision, the Supreme Court upheld the use of class action waivers in individual employment agreements. Employers were then…

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Joel Aziere

Supreme Court to Consider LGBT Rights in the Workplace

On Monday, April 22 and Tuesday, April 23, 2019, the Supreme Court announced that next term it will rule on whether federal employment discrimination laws protect LGBT employees.  The Justices agreed to hear a trio of cases – two alleging discrimination based on sexual orientation and a third claiming discrimination based on transgender status. In…

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Brian-working

Recognizing Signs of Employee Dissatisfaction That Lead to Union Organization

Which employees are most likely to seek union assistance in the workplace and/or file claims against their employer? The answer, of course, is those who are dissatisfied with their work environment. In general, employees who feel they are respected and treated fairly at work, and enjoy a positive work culture, are less likely to turn…

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The Importance of Regularly Reviewing and Updating Your Company’s Restrictive Covenant Agreements

Restrictive covenants restrain what would otherwise be lawful competition by current and/or former employees. They serve to protect, among other legitimate business interests, a company’s trade secrets, confidential and/or proprietary information and documents, customers and the goodwill the company has developed with said customers, and employees and the intellectual capital they possess. If a company’s…

How to Handle Requests for Special Ed Evaluations When Expulsion Proceedings Are Pending

We have noticed a seemingly greater number of due process hearings around the country related to student discipline and manifestation determinations. This Legal Update will address the “11th hour referral,” a common but complex scenario which triggers several intertwined sets of procedural requirements related to student discipline and manifestation determinations under the Individuals with Disabilities Education…

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student study group

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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Seventh Circuit Reaffirms the Importance of Prompt, Effective Remedial Action as a Defense to Harassment Claims

On December 26, 2018, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision affirming summary judgment and dismissing claims of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation against an employer, in Swyear v. Fare Foods Corporation. The Seventh Circuit reiterated that single or isolated incidents of inappropriate conduct in the workplace may not always rise to…

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Federal Commission on School Safety Issues Final Report

On December 18, 2018, the Federal Commission on School Safety issued its much-anticipated final report. The Commission, led by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, was created by President Trump following the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. It was tasked with “producing a report of policy recommendations in an effort to help prevent future tragedies.” The report…

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