Supreme Court Finds Stripes and Zigzags Eligible for Copyright Protection

By | K-12 Legal Insights | March 30, 2017
Schools may have fewer choices in purchasing cheerleading uniforms in the future.  Varsity Brands, Inc. (“Varsity”) and Star Athletica, LLC (“Star”) have been battling over the design of cheerleading uniforms and whether the designs of the uniforms are protectable under the Copyright Act.   View Full Post
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Supreme Court Adopts New Standard for IEPs

By | K-12 Legal Insights | March 23, 2017
In today’s unanimous decision in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District RE-1, the Supreme Court articulated the standard by which federal courts should evaluate challenges to individualized education programs (“IEPs”) for students with disabilities.  To pass muster under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”), an IEP, according to the Court, must be “reasonably calculated to enable a child to make progress appropriate in light of the child’s circumstances.”  Op. View Full Post
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Playing the Waiting Game: Trump Administration Has Yet to Nominate an Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights

It has been over one month since Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos was confirmed by the Senate. Secretary DeVos and the Trump Administration have already had a lot of impact on schools during the past month in office, including withdrawing Obama-Era Transgender Guidance and providing guidance on consolidated state plans related to the Every Student Succeeds Act. View Full Post
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ESSA Accountability Regulations: Where Do We Stand?

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos recently provided some clarifications on the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and released an updated template for the consolidated state plans. The hope, Secretary DeVos said, is that the updated template “ensures greater flexibility for state and local education leaders to do what they know is best for children, while also maintaining important protections for economically disadvantaged students, students with disabilities, and English learners.” Also, recently the Senate voted 50-49 to block the accountability rules for ESSA prepared by the Obama Administration. View Full Post
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How Does President Trump’s Budget Blueprint Propose to Impact K-12 Education?

The President’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released: America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again. The Budget Blueprint provides an overview of the President’s budget priorities for fiscal year 2018. With respect to education overall, the Budget Blueprint proposes $59 billion in funding for the U.S. View Full Post
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Supreme Court Clarifies Administrative Exhaustion Requirements Under IDEA

By | K-12 Legal Insights | February 24, 2017
On February 22, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its opinion in Fry ex rel. E.F. v. Napoleon Community SchoolsFry addresses the circumstances in which parents must exhaust the administrative remedies found in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), when their lawsuit purports to assert claims only under other federal discrimination statutes—namely, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and § 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.  View Full Post
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Government Withdraws Motion Challenging Texas Injunction On Transgender Student Guidance

Choosing your wayOn Friday, February 10, 2017, the Trump Administration announced that the United States will no longer challenge the injunction against enforcement of the joint Department of Justice and Department of Education guidance on treatment of transgender students that was issued last year. View Full Post
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What Level of Educational Benefit Must Be Offered to Students with Disabilities?

By | K-12 Legal Insights | January 18, 2017
On January 11, 2017, the Supreme Court took up its second case this term dealing with the educational rights of students with disabilities, Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District. The case involves an autistic student, whose parents were not satisfied with his individual educational plan (IEP). View Full Post
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