School uniforms, dress codes, and free expression: What’s the balance?

  Requiring school uniforms may be less legally fraught than implementing a school dress code. More and more public schools are adopting school uniform policies. In 2013, 23% of public [...]

February 26th, 2018|

Education as an American right?

    Federal law in the U.S. has never recognized a right to public education. But Congress or the Supreme Court might be sympathetic to an argument for educational rights [...]

January 22nd, 2018|

School districts control teachers’ classroom speech 

  School boards set the curriculum for schools, and they have the legal right to decide what materials and speech are appropriate for the classroom.  Teachers face particular challenges when they are [...]

December 4th, 2017|

When federal and state laws differ: The case of private schools and the IDEA

  On the provision of special education services for students attending private schools, state laws may grant rights that federal regulations do not. In education, the federal government takes a [...]

October 23rd, 2017|

Kneeling during the national anthem: At schools, it’s protected speech

By Julie Underwood If high school football players — or other public school athletes — choose to “take a knee” during upcoming competitions, the First Amendment will support their action. [...]

September 28th, 2017|

The privacy of a student’s backpack

  Does a student have a reasonable expectation of privacy when he leaves a backpack behind? Is the school behaving reasonably when personnel open an unattended backpack? School personnel must [...]

September 24th, 2017|

An interesting year of cases in the U.S. Supreme Court

    A number of recent Supreme Court decisions are likely to have significant implications for K-12 education. By Julie Underwood One thing about being a U.S. Supreme Court watcher [...]

August 29th, 2017|

Mixing guns and schools

Schools are subject to an often-conflicting array of gun regulations from three levels of government. Educators and parents want schools to be safe places for children. And as the PDK [...]

August 14th, 2017|

The transgender question: What are schools to do? 

As the debate goes on, schools must protect students and comply with the law.  Over the past six months, considerable media and legal attention have been focused on the rights [...]

July 24th, 2017|

Student online speech rights on and off campus

  If off-campus online speech presents the likelihood of a disruption on campus, administrators can respond by disciplining the responsible students. Students do not “shed their rights to freedom of [...]

July 17th, 2017|