Posted by John R. Price on 5/19/2023

On May 15, the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) released an updated guidance document on districts’ obligations related to school prayer and religious expression at school by students and school employees. The guidance provides an overview of the constitutional landscape of school prayer and religious expression and reminds districts as to some of their administrative and…

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on 7/1/2022

Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion in the case Kennedy v. Bremerton School District. The case involved a high school football coach who lost his job after he knelt at midfield after games to pray. The coach sued the district for the disciplinary actions it took against him, alleging that the district’s actions violated his rights under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution…

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on 5/2/2022

Last Monday, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments in the case of Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, which asks whether it is constitutional for school employees to pray on school grounds, at a school event, with students and other members of the school community present.

The landmark case on school prayer, Engel v. Vitale, 370 U.S. 421 (1962), concluded that the First Amendment…

Posted by Ralph Lusher III on 3/25/2022

The Supreme Court of the United States recently provided a decision in a First Amendment retaliation claim.  In the case, the board of trustees of the Houston Community College (HCC) censured David Wilson, one of its board members, and barred him from holding officer positions on the board or from receiving travel reimbursements. Wilson alleged that the censure violated his First Amendment right to free speech. The district court ruled against him, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit reversed. This…

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Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on 11/23/2019

As the season of holiday parties, concerts and performances approaches, schools need to be sure to plan events that comply with the Constitution. Of particular note is the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, which provides that government shall “make no law respecting an establishment of religion.”

Posted by Megan E. Greulich on 11/30/2018

On Nov. 20, the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE)

Posted by Van D. Keating on 6/27/2018

In a 5-4 decision, the US Supreme Court ruled today that the State of Illinois’ extraction of agency fees from non-consenting public-sector employees violates the First Amendment.

The decision, in Janus v. American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees,

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on 6/22/2018

The June issue of Journal, OSBA’s award-winning magazine, features an entire section on hot topics for school districts. The articles, written by six members of the Ohio Council of School Board Attorneys (OCSBA), discuss five topics of critical interest to Ohio school board members and administrators.

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on 3/6/2018

In the wake of 17 deaths in the shooting at Marjory Stoneham Douglas High School on Feb. 14, students across the country are organizing public statements, letters to the editor and planned walkouts to protest what students perceive as a lack of effective response by leaders.

One planned walkout will occur next Wednesday, March 14, when some students will…

Posted by Megan E. Greulich on 2/28/2018

On Monday, Feb. 26, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Janus v. AFCSME, Council 31 regarding the constitutionality of requiring nonmember bargaining unit…