The Educators Guide to Texas School Law: Eighth Edition

Paperback | September 15, 2014

byJim Walsh, Frank Kemerer, Laurie Maniotis

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Much has changed in the area of school law since the first edition of The Educator's Guide was published in 1986. Successive editions grew incrementally longer to keep abreast of legal developments. In this new eighth edition, the authors have streamlined the discussion by pruning older material and weaving in new developments. The result is an authoritative source on all major dimensions of Texas school law that is both well integrated and easy to read.

Intended for Texas school personnel, school board members, interested attorneys, and taxpayers, the eighth edition explains what the law is and what the implications are for effective school operations. It is designed to help professional educators avoid expensive and time consuming lawsuits by taking effective preventive action. It is an especially valuable resource for school law courses and staff development sessions.

The eighth edition begins with a review of the legal structure of the Texas school system. As Chapter 1 notes, education law is a complex interweaving of state and federal constitutional, statutory, administrative, and judicial law. It is important to understand the nature of the system before reading other sections.

Successive chapters address attendance and the instructional program, the education of children with special needs, employment and personnel, expression and associational rights, the role of religion in public schools, student discipline, open meetings and records, privacy, search and seizure, and legal liability under both federal and Texas law. In addition to state law, the book addresses the role of the federal government in school operation through such major federal legislation as the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

Statute and case references are kept as simple as possible, and a complete index of case citations is included for those readers who wish to consult the cases themselves. The appendices describe how case law is reported and where to find it, along with a glossary of legal terms and a listing of other sources on Texas school law.

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Much has changed in the area of school law since the first edition of The Educator's Guide was published in 1986. Successive editions grew incrementally longer to keep abreast of legal developments. In this new eighth edition, the authors have streamlined the discussion by pruning older material and weaving in new developments. The res...

Format:PaperbackDimensions:504 pages, 9 × 6 × 1 inPublished:September 15, 2014Publisher:University of Texas PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0292760841

ISBN - 13:9780292760844

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Table of Contents

Preface1. An Overview of Education Law, Texas Schools, and Parent RightsSources of LawConstitutional LawStatutory LawAdministrative LawJudicial LawThe Structure and Governance of the Texas School SystemTexas LegislatureState Board of Education and the Texas Education AgencyLocal School DistrictsCharter SchoolsPrivate SchoolsSchool AdministratorsDistrict- and Campus-Level Decision-MakingHow the U.S. Constitution and Federal Government Affect Texas SchoolsKey Provisions of the U.S. ConstitutionImportant Federal StatutesSchool FinanceParent RightsRights within Public SchoolsChoosing Private SchoolsEducating Children at HomeSummary2. Student Attendance and the Instructional ProgramAttendanceImpermissible DiscriminationResidency, Guardianship, and the Right to Attend a District's SchoolsThe Compulsory School Attendance LawKindergarten and Prekindergarten ProgramsAbsencesMaintaining a Safe School EnvironmentThe Instructional ProgramThe Required CurriculumStudent AssessmentSchool District AccountabilityThe Effect of the No Child Left Behind ActRemoval of Objectionable Library and Study MaterialsTechnology at School: Computers, the Internet, and Cell PhonesThe Federal Copyright LawExtracurricular Activities and the UILAddressing the Needs of Special GroupsAt-Risk ChildrenBilingual ChildrenGifted ChildrenAbused and Neglected ChildrenSummary3. Special EducationThe Jargon of Special EducationFederal LegislationChild FindEvaluationEligibilityResponse to Intervention (RtI)ARD CommitteeIndividualized Education ProgramGeneral CurriculumNCLB and Statewide AssessmentsLeast Restrictive EnvironmentProcedural SafeguardsAttorneys' FeesFAPERelated ServicesExtended School Year ServicesUnilateral PlacementsPrivate-School ChildrenDiscipline of Students with DisabilitiesExpulsionStay PutChange of PlacementTen DaysManifestation DeterminationsSection 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973Summary4. The Employment RelationshipConstitutional IssuesDue Process of LawHow Much Process Is Due?Types of Employment ArrangementsAt-Will EmploymentNon–Chapter 21 ContractsProbationary ContractsTerm ContractsContinuing ContractsThird-Party Independent Contract Educators and Retire/RehireSelection of StaffCertification and the Role of SBECNondiscrimination LawsProtected ActivityThe Hiring ProcessCriminal RecordsThe Impact of NCLBRestrictions on EmploymentEnding the RelationshipAt-Will EmployeesNon–Chapter 21 ContractsProbationary ContractsTerm ContractsContract NonrenewalContract TerminationProfessional CapacityDual-Assignment ContractsRemediesReduction in Force (RIF)Continuing ContractsThe Independent Hearing SystemA Few Final Thoughts on "Good Cause"Constructive DischargeSummary5. Personnel IssuesReassignmentThe Constitutional IssuesSame Professional CapacityCompensation IssuesDuties and ScheduleThe Commissioner's JurisdictionReassignment of the SuperintendentCompensation DisputesTeacher AppraisalEmployment BenefitsPlanning and Preparation PeriodDuty-Free LunchPersonal LeaveHealth InsuranceAssault LeaveTeacher RetirementTemporary Disability LeaveFamily and Medical Leave ActUSERRAMiscellaneous Leave PoliciesWage and Hour RequirementsWorkers' Compensation and Unemployment CompensationGrievances and the Role of Employee OrganizationsEmployee Grievances: A Little HistoryHearing Employee GrievancesThe Role of Employee OrganizationsCollective Bargaining on the National SceneThe Law in TexasSummary6. Expression and Associational RightsEducator Rights of ExpressionExpression outside the SchoolExpression within the SchoolElectronic CommunicationAcademic FreedomTexas Whistleblower ActEducator Freedom of AssociationStudent Rights of ExpressionCommunication among Students on CampusSchool-Sponsored Student PublicationsNon-School-Sponsored Student Publications and MaterialsElectronic CommunicationStudent Freedom of AssociationSummary7. Religion in the SchoolsLegal FrameworkNo Government Establishment of ReligionFree Exercise of ReligionContemporary IssuesThe Pledge of AllegianceSchool PrayerSchool-Sponsored or Employee-Led PrayerSilent MeditationInvocations, Benedictions, and Religious Speeches at GraduationBaccalaureate CeremoniesStudent-Initiated Prayer at School, Extracurricular Activities, and Athletic EventsTeaching Creation-ScienceSecular Humanism and Pagan ReligionReligion in Classrooms, Choir Programs, and Holiday ObservancesTeaching about ReligionStudent Papers and Presentations on Religious TopicsChoir ProgramsHoliday ObservancesClergy in the SchoolsDistribution of Religious LiteratureWearing Religious SymbolsStudent Religious Groups Meeting on CampusReligious ExemptionsAssistance to Sectarian Private SchoolsSummary8. Student DisciplineConstitutional Concerns: Due ProcessOther Constitutional IssuesOverbreadthProtected AreasVoid for VaguenessChapter 37: An OverviewStudent Code of ConductBullyingTeacher-Initiated RemovalSuspensionRemoval to a DAEPMandatory PlacementsDiscretionary PlacementsProcedureLife in a DAEPExpulsionGroundsProceduresEmergency ActionsInteraction with Law EnforcementOther Disciplinary PracticesCorporal PunishmentSuspension from Extracurricular Activities Summary9. Privacy Issues: Community, Educators, StudentsThe Legal FrameworkThe U.S. ConstitutionFederal StatutesState LawThe Texas Open Meetings and Public Information ActsTexas Open Meetings ActMeetings and QuorumsNoticeEmergency MeetingsClosed SessionsTape Recordings and Certified AgendasMeetings by Telephone and Videoconference CallInternet BroadcastViolationsCriminal ProvisionsTexas Public Information ActItems That Must Be DisclosedPersonal InformationCriminal History Information, Witness Statements, and InvestigativeReportsInter- or Intraagency MemorandaStudent RecordsOther Exempt ItemsProduction of RecordsEducator Privacy RightsLifestyle IssuesEmployee Drug TestingPersonnel Records and Employee ReferencesSearch of School Computer Files and PagersSearch of File CabinetsStudent Privacy RightsStudent Personal PrivacyStudent RecordsParent RightsEducation RecordsDisclosure of RecordsRecordkeepingViolationsChild Custody IssuesStudent Dress and GroomingStudent Search and SeizureStandards for Student SearchesStrip SearchesUse of Magnetometers, Metal Detectors, and BreathalyzersLocker and Desk SearchesSearch of Cell Phones and Electronic CommunicationsUse of Sniffer Dogs to Conduct SearchesStudent Drug TestingSummary10. Legal LiabilityIdentifying Areas of Legal LiabilityState TortsSchool District ImmunitySovereign Immunity and Contract CasesQualified Immunity for Public School Professional EmployeesThe Special Case of Corporal Punishment and Physical ForceLaw and the School CounselorFederal Civil Rights LiabilityGovernmental LiabilityIndividual LiabilityPersonal Injuries and the ConstitutionA Federally Protected RightThe District Itself Is ResponsibleMore Than NegligenceA New TheoryLiability under Federal Statutory LawSummaryAppendixesA. How to Find and Read a Court CaseB. Glossary of Legal TerminologyC. Reference SourcesIndex of CasesIndex of TopicsTables1. Basic Components of Texas Education Law2. Relationship of Law to Establishment and Operation of TexasPublic Schools3. School Finance at a Glance4. Major School Desegregation Decisions, 1954–20075. Complying with Copyright GuidelinesFigures1. The Overall Structure of Texas Administrative Law2. Geographic Jurisdiction of U.S. District Courts in Texas