School Law – EDUC 647

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

An examination of the legal aspects of education affecting administrators, teachers, students, parents and board members; various forms of liability; separation of church and state.

Prerequisites

Background Clear Out of State with a score of 5 or Background Clear Virginia with a score of 5 or Background Clear International with a score of 5 or Background Check Clearance with a score of 5

Rationale

Christian, private, and public school administrators are responsible for upholding the law as it applies to personnel, business contracts, meeting student needs, and operating an institution. Administrators must have knowledge of the law in terms of its direct application to the educational setting.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Develop an in-service presentation and a preventative law program to be used in any local school setting.
  2. Apply a case method of analysis to case documents of pertinent legal cases.
  3. Apply legal philosophy and social policy in formulating decisions or underlying legislation.
  4. Evaluate legal, ethical, and fair practices within the school environment, carefully guarding the religious rights of students, faculty and staff, and visitors to campus.
  5. Determine how to comply with the requirements of specific statutes and regulations under various sets of circumstances.
  6. Use current law cases in the process of implementing new procedures and practices.
  7. Analyze the elements of making up a negligent action while determining how to identify potential problem areas to avoid legal liability.
  8. Evaluate discrepancies in current school policies that should be brought to leadership for adjustments and revisions.

VDOE Competencies Met in This Course for School Administrators

1.b.7    Effective communication skills including consensus building, negotiation, and mediation skills.

1.c.2    Principles and issues of supervising and leading others to ensure a working and learning climate that is safe, secure, and respectful of a diverse school community.

1.c.3    Management decisions that ensure successful teaching and learning including human resources management and development, theories of motivation, change in school culture, innovation and creativity, conflict resolution, adult learning, and professional development models.

1.c.5    Principles and issues related to school facilities and use of space and time.

1.c.6    Legal issues impacting school operations and management.

1.d.4    Principles of effective two-way communication, including consensus building and negotiation skills.

1.e.4    Intentional and purposeful effort to model professional, moral, and ethical standards, as well as personal integrity.

1.f.3     Identify and respond to internal and external forces and influences on a school.

1.f.4     Identify and apply the processes of educational policy development at the state, local, and school level.

1.f.5     Identify and demonstrate ways to influence educational policy development at the state, local, and school level.

1.g.1    Experiential activities that complement, implement, and parallel the university curriculum.

1.g.2    Activities that emphasize student work with practical application that shall take place in the internship and the practicum field experience, as well as throughout the university program.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the candidate will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (3)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the candidate will participate in 3 Discussion Boards Forums throughout this course. In each forum, the candidate will submit a thread of at least 350 words and at least 2 replies of at least 150 words each. (MLO C, D, E F, H)

Case Reviews (3)

The candidate will review and reflect upon 3 different precedent-setting case scenarios. Each case review must be at least 2 pages, provide citations for relevant case facts,  a reference page, and adhere to current APA formatting. (MLO H)

Practicum Proposal

Practicum Proposal Form: The candidate is required to complete 30 practicum hours in a school in order to pass this course.

Field Experience Summary (FES): The candidate will complete this in the provided form and include relevant information from the practicum. This assignment is required in order to pass this course.

Field Experience Assessment (FEA): The candidate’s onsite mentor will complete the FEA online. This score will then be reflected in the blackboard course. The mentor will receive an e-mail from Liberty with a link, username, and password to access the FEA. This assignment is required in order to pass this course.

Legal Entanglement Project

Part 1 – Moral and Legal Issues (Analysis)

The candidate will select a meaningful and relevant topic in a particular school.  The topic is to be a legal, moral, or ethical issue that—left unaddressed—could escalate into a legal entanglement (i.e., litigation). The candidate will use a template to complete the Moral and Legal Issues Analysis. When completed, the template should be 1–2 pages plus a title page and reference page.

Part 2 – Collaboration (Analysis)

The candidate will present conclusions from the first submission (Analysis: Moral and Legal Issues) to select families, caregivers, colleagues, supervisors, and students. The candidate will gain their perspectives and collaborate with them about the proposed topic for the Legal Entanglement Project.  Furthermore, the candidate will explain how they were involved in the decision-making process of supporting the selected topic. The candidate will write a 3–5-page paper about the collaboration, including the stakeholders’ perspectives and applicable data.

Part 3 – Case Law Review (Knowledge Base)

The candidate will review 4 court cases on the selected topic, applying the court’s decision to how the issue was handled consistently, fairly, and ethically within the school.    Regarding these court decisions, the candidate must also provide a statement as evidence of his/her ability to serve as a spokesperson/advocate on these issues for students and families within the school.  Length requirement is a 2-page minimum. This assignment will build upon the Analysis: Collaboration assignment.

Part 4 – Literature Review (Knowledge Base)

The candidate will review 4 references from a variety of sources on the selected topic.  These may be position statements, opinion pieces, research articles, books, etc.  As the candidate review the literature on the selected topic, he/she will identify emerging trends or issues that are likely to affect the school.  Regarding these emerging trends, the candidate are also to provide a statement as evidence of his/her ability to adapt leadership strategies to address them. Part 4 must be a minimum of 4 pages.

Part 5 – Paper

Based on the school analysis and the knowledge base of case law and literature, The candidate is to develop a comprehensive 5–10-page paper to address the potential legal entanglement.  The focus of the paper is to provide school staff, students, and visitors with a safe and secure environment.  All aspects of the paper should be aligned with case law decisions.

Part 6 – PowerPoint

The candidate will prepare a PowerPoint presentation of at least 15 slides that would be given to a parent-teacher organization and/or a school board to convey the results of the school analysis, knowledge base, and Legal Entanglement Project.  The candidate will convey significant policies, laws, regulations, and procedures relevant to the selected topic.

Part 7 – Final Submission

The candidate will combine all of the previously submitted assignments into the final submission of the Legal Entanglement Project. The candidate should use feedback from each of the previously submitted assignments prior to submitting the final project: Legal Entanglement Project. The candidate will submit all (6) previous submissions with changes/corrections highlighted to Livetext. (MLO A-H)

Reading Quizzes (3)

The candidate will complete 3 open-book/open-notes quizzes based on the textbook readings. Each quiz has a time limit of 1 hour and consists of multiple-choice and true/false questions that cover material from the textbook. Please note, questions are NOT limited to the readings for that specific week. (MLO A-H)