School Law Advisor Blog

Special Education Update: Title II Requirements for Students with Hearing Impairments

A recent Ninth Circuit decision has made a distinction between a school district's provision of a "basic floor of opportunity" to students with disabilities under IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) and the satisfactory requirements of Title II of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act).  Title II requires districts to take appropriate steps to ensure that communications with individuals with disabilities are "as effective as communications with othe

Illinois Updates: New Statutes of Note

Concealed Carry and District Duties:  Public Act 98-0063 allows for the concealed carry of firearms with specified restrictions.  It specifically prohibits carrying a concealed firearm in "any building, real property, and parking area under the control of a public or private elementary or secondary school".  It also contains a provision that states that it is the duty of the principal to report to the Department of State Police "when a student is det

Fourth District Appellate Court Update: FOIA and Personal Electronic Communications

You may remember the guidance issued in 2011, in which the Office of the Attorney General issued an opinion holding that electronic records relating to the transaction of public business are "public records" within the meaning of the Freedom of Information Act - even then they are generated on a public official's private equipment and/or maintained on personal electronic accounts.

6 Tasks to Complete before the End of the School Year

As your administrations and boards are wrapping up the year and preparing for next year, we wanted to give you a quick run-down of new and nearly new tasks created by the law that should not be forgotten for next year: 

Understanding Some Implications of the Affordable Care Act

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (oftentimes called "Obama-care" in the media and by politicians on both sides of the aisle), includes among its many provisions, employer "assessments" and excise taxes which will likely change how many employers (including school districts) provide group health insurance or employer contributions on behalf of employees. 

New Law Permits Juvenile Records Disclosure for Safety; Limits Means of Disclosure

On January 1, 2013, Public Act 97-1104 will become law.  Among other changes, the new law purports to increase and ease the sharing of information between law enforcement and school officials, adds a new section to the Juvenile Court Act (and the School Code) exempting certain discussions from prohibitions against law enforcement communication regarding juvenile offenses. 

Next Steps: An Update on Principal Evaluation Plans

As discussed in our last update, and pursuant to Section 24A-15 of the Illinois School Code and 23 Ill.Admin.Code 50.300, each school district must have a PERA-compliant evaluation plan for principals and assistant principals in place no later than September 1, 2012.