Archives: Liability

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Massachusetts’ Supreme Court Finds Colleges May Face Liability for Student Suicide Under Certain Circumstances

Earlier this month, Massachusetts’ highest court ruled favorably for Massachusetts Institute of Technology (“MIT”) and three school officials in a wrongful death lawsuit closely watched by educational institutions for close to a decade.  The court found that while a special … Read more

Sixth Circuit: Title VII Prohibits Discrimination Based on Transgender and/or Transitioning Status

Less than one week after the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination bars discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its own landmark Title VII … Read more

U.S. Department of Education Announces Intention to Review and Replace Title IX Regulations Concerning Sexual Harassment and Violence

On Thursday, in a speech by U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy Devos, the Department announced that it would undertake a review of its current Title IX enforcement guidance concerning campus-based sexual harassment and violence. Particularly, Ms. DeVos notified stakeholders … Read more

Connecticut Supreme Court Issues Decision in Munn v. Hotchkiss

On Friday, the Connecticut Supreme Court issued its long-awaited ruling in Munn v. Hotchkiss School, the case involving a private school student who contracted tick-borne encephalitis on a school-sponsored trip to China.  In its ruling, the Supreme Court found unanimously … Read more

State Department of Education Addresses Immigration Executive Order

On January 30, 2017, the Connecticut State Department of Education (“CSDE”) released a memorandum titled, “Guidance for Districts Regarding Refugee Students,” in response to an Executive Order signed on January 27, 2017, restricting immigration into the United States.  … Read more

U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice Release Dear Colleague Letters Jointly Announcing New SECURe Rubrics for School Resource Officer Programs

On September 8, 2016, the United States Department of Education and the United States Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (“COPS”) jointly released new guidance regarding school resource officer programs.  The new Safe School-based Enforcement through Collaboration, … Read more

Stamford Location Added: What Every School Board Member Should Know: A Review of Legal Rights and Responsibilities – December 15th

For those of you in Fairfield County, we are pleased to offer this seminar in our Stamford Office. Join Shipman & Goodwin attorneys Thomas B. Mooney, Jessica Richman Smith and Melika Forbes for a timely discussion and comprehensive review of … Read more

Register Now for What Every School Board Member Should Know: A Review of Legal Rights and Responsibilities – December 15th

Join attorneys Gary R. Brochu and Jessica L. Ritter for a timely presentation for board of education members. This workshop is intended to provide a comprehensive review of the legal rights and responsibilities of board of education members.

Workshop topics … Read more

Federal Government Files ‘Statement of Interest’ In Gender-Identity Case

In recent years, there have been increasing concerns involving discrimination faced by the transgender community.  Not surprisingly, these concerns have centered on the challenges faced by gender non-conforming students and whether the needs of such students are being met by … Read more

Vermont District Court Allows First Amendment Case to Go Forward Against School Board for Banning Parent from School Grounds

In a recent court ruling, Judge Garvan Murthai of the Vermont District Court allowed a parent’s First Amendment claims to go forward to trial after the Superintendent banned the parent, whose child was eligible for special education and related services, … Read more

FAPE-Based Approach to Bullying Complaints

On October 21, 2014, United States Assistant Secretary Catherine Lhamon issued another Dear Colleague Letter on the topic of bullying of students with disabilities.  This is the fourth letter from the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) or … Read more

School Districts Seek to Have Parents of Student “Bullies” Contribute to any Judgment Against Districts

Two New Jersey school districts, who are being sued for their failure to halt bullying against the plaintiff student, were successful in their efforts to have the parents of the student bullies contribute to any award that may be issued … Read more

Courts Hold that Connecticut’s Bullying Law does not Create a Private Cause of Action

Two recent Connecticut Superior Court decisions have held that the state’s anti-bullying legislation, most recently revised in 2011, does not create a private right of action for parents and students.

In both superior court cases, parents had brought suits against … Read more

Parent Sues Florida School District for Requiring Handler for Student’s Service Dog

A parent has filed suit against a Florida school district over a policy regarding service animals that requires the family to provide a handler and insurance for the animal. The federal lawsuit against Broward County School District is on behalf … Read more

New Study Warns of Risks of Using Cloud-Based Record Storage

School districts around the country are increasingly using cloud-based technologies to store their data. According to a recent study by the Fordham University Law School’s Center on Law and Information, however, many districts have not set clear policies for cloud-based … Read more

The Second Circuit Upholds a $1 Million Jury Award to a Student Who Was Repeatedly Harassed by Fellow Students

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits public school systems that receive federal funding from intentionally discriminating on the basis of race, color, or national origin. A school district can be liable for intentional discrimination when it … Read more