School Law Bulletin Fall 2014

How will California teacher-tenure ruling affect Rhode Island?

In June, California Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu struck down California’s teacher-tenure system in a decision that has been widely hailed and criticized. According to Treu, several California statutes significantly inhibit the ability of California school departments to dismiss ineffective teachers. The judge found that high-poverty, minority students disproportionately experience this backlog of bad teachers. Steve Adams assesses how this ruling might impact the teacher-tenure system in Rhode Island.

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Can school officials search student cell phones?

School officials from time to time may take cell phones away from students for any number of reasons, such as violating a school rule prohibiting texting during class. However, taking control of a cell phone during school hours does not give teachers or administrators free rein to search the data stored on the cell phone.

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New MA law allows employees to take leave if victims of domestic violence

A new law in Massachusetts allows employees up to 15 days leave in any 12-month period if they or their family members are victims of domestic violence or abusive behavior. The law, which went into effect Aug. 8, requires employers (including charter schools) with 50 or more employees to provide leave benefits to employees who are victims of domestic violence and/or abusive behavior, or who are family members of victims of domestic violence and/or abusive behavior.

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