Chapter 1 Overview - Public School Law, Dr. W.A. Kritsonis


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Chapter 1 Overview - Public School Law, Dr. W.A. Kritsonis

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Chapter 1 Overview - Public School Law, Dr. W.A. Kritsonis

  1. 1. An Overview of Education Law, Texas Schools, and Parent Rights William Allan Kritsonis, PhD
  2. 2. Chapter I An Overview of Education Law Texas Schools and Parent Rights
  3. 3. The chapter reviewed several sources of educational law and their relationship to the structure and operation of Texas public school system.
  4. 4. Sources of Education Law <ul><li>Constitutional Law </li></ul><ul><li>Statutory Law </li></ul><ul><li>Administrative Law </li></ul><ul><li>Judicial Law </li></ul>
  5. 5. Basic Components of Texas Education Law <ul><li>Source: Tenth Amendment to U. S. Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>The Bill of Rights and the Fourteenth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>Texas Constitution of 1876, Art. 7, §1 and Bill of Rights </li></ul><ul><li>Impact in Texas Schooling: States that “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively… “Since education is not delegated to the federal government, it is a power reserved to the states. </li></ul><ul><li>Protects certain civil liberties of employees and students in the public schools. </li></ul><ul><li>Authorizes the state legislature to support and maintain an efficient system of public free schools and provides for civil liberties </li></ul>Type of Law: Constitutional
  6. 6. Type of Law: Statutory Source: Impact on Texas schooling <ul><li>Acts of the U. S. Congress </li></ul><ul><li>Acts of Texas Legislature most pertaining to education are found in the Texas Education Code </li></ul><ul><li>Acts of Congress guarantee various civil rights and establish the conditions upon which states and political subdivisions may receive federal funds </li></ul><ul><li>Sets up the State Board of Education and the Texas Education Agency to carry our limited educational functions. Actual operation of schools is left to school districts. School districts and school personnel are part of the state. </li></ul>,_2007_Rules_w_Occupations_Code_1701.pdf
  7. 7. Type of Law: Statutory Source: Impact on Texas schooling <ul><li>Federal Administrative regulations </li></ul><ul><li>Policies and rulings by school boards, Texas Commissioner of Education, and State Board of Education </li></ul><ul><li>Both TEA and local school districts must comply with the regulations promulgated by federal educational agencies implementing federal statutes. </li></ul><ul><li>Board of trustees develop policies to be utilized in operating their schools. State board and commissioner have the authority to establish rules that govern school district activity in areas designated by the legislature. Any person aggrieved by the schools laws of Texas or actions of school districts involving school laws or impairing employment contracts can appeal to the commissioner. Policies, rules, and appeal decisions are classified as administrative law. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Type of Law: Judicial Source: Impact on Texas schooling <ul><li>Decisions of state courts </li></ul><ul><li>Decisions of federal courts </li></ul><ul><li>Any aggrieved person can appeal an adverse administrative ruling from the commissioner into state courts. Highest state court (civil) is the Texas Supreme Court, which has the last word on matters of state law, subject, of course, to the ultimate authority of the U. S. Supreme Court to review questions of state law in light of federal statutes and the U. S. Constitution. </li></ul><ul><li>Any person alleging state interference with a right granted by the U. S. Constitution or federal law can bring an action in a federal court. The lowest federal court is the district court. There are thirteen intermediate appellate federal courts ( ours is the U. S. Court of appeals for the Fifth Circuit) At the top is the U. S. Supreme court, Which has the last word on maters of federal law. The U. S. Constitution provides that any state action, law, or constitutional provision that conflicts with the Constitution or a federal law is null and void. </li></ul>
  9. 9. The most important function of federal courts is to adjudicate disputes arising under the Constitution and statutes of the United States. The present jurisdiction of the Fifth Circuit encompasses Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas.
  10. 10. Geographic Jurisdiction of U. S. District Courts in Texas TEXAS NORTHERN TEXAS EASTERN TEXAS SOUTHERN TEXAS WESTERN
  11. 11. One might assume that state and federal case law has relatively little impact on Texas public education, compared with state statutes and administrative rules and regulations.. For the last thirty years , since the late 1960’s , courts have been increasingly involved in a maze of litigation involving the day- to day management of schools. The rulings they hand down have become an important part of school law and are ignored at one’s peril.
  12. 12. The Structure and Governance of the Texas School System <ul><li>Texas Legislature is responsible for the structure and operations of the Texas public school system. </li></ul><ul><li>State Board of Education and the Texas Education Agency were separated from each other in 1995 by legislature. The board has fifteen member and is limited to perform only those duties assigned by the state constitution or by the legislature. While many of its functions have shifted in recent years to the Texas commissioner of Education </li></ul>
  13. 13. The SBOE <ul><li>Establishes the state curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>Graduation requirement </li></ul><ul><li>Determine the standard for satisfactory student performance on assessment instruments </li></ul><ul><li>Purchasing text books investing the permanent school funds </li></ul><ul><li>The attorney general advised that the board’s authority over textbooks </li></ul>
  14. 14. Texas Education Agency <ul><li>TEA is composed of the Texas Commissioner of Education and the agency staff </li></ul><ul><li>Like the SBOE, the agency can perform only those duties specifically assigned to it by the legislature </li></ul><ul><li>TEC §7.021 lists fourteen educational functions that TEA is to perform. Among them are monitoring the district compliance with federal and state programs, conducting research to improve teaching and learning, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Is authorized to enter into agreement with federal agencies regarding school lunch, school construction </li></ul><ul><li>Administers the capital investment fund established by the legislature to provide grants to school districts </li></ul><ul><li>The most powerful player is the Texas Commissioner of Education </li></ul>
  15. 15. Local School Districts <ul><li>The government of schools is left to local boards of trustees. </li></ul><ul><li>Has the power and duty to oversee the management of the public schools of the district </li></ul><ul><li>May acquire and hold real and personal property, sue and be sued, receive bequests and donations, levy and collect taxes, sell minerals and property belonging to the district </li></ul><ul><li>The majority of school districts elect their board members. </li></ul>
  16. 16. Charter and Private schools On pg 20 there is an overview of a charter school On pg 25 are the state regulations for private schools.
  17. 17. School Administrator <ul><li>The Superintendent is the chief operating officer of the public school. TEC §11.201 lists eleven superintendent duties. Among them implement the policy of the board </li></ul><ul><li>Operation of the educational programs, services, and facilities of the district </li></ul><ul><li>Appraisal of the staff </li></ul><ul><li>Assigning and evaluating personnel </li></ul><ul><li>Make personnel recommendations to the school board </li></ul><ul><li>Develop the budget, organize the central administration, overseeing administrative regulations </li></ul>
  18. 18. The school Principal <ul><li>Is the frontline administrator, with statutory responsibility under the direction of the superintendent for administering the day-to-day activities of the school </li></ul><ul><li>Have seven major functions listed in TEC §II.202 </li></ul><ul><li>They have approval power for teacher and staff appointment to the campus from a pool of applicants selected by the district </li></ul><ul><li>Set the campus education objectives through the planning process, develop budget, have the responsibility for student discipline </li></ul><ul><li>Assign, evaluate, and promote campus personnel, as well to make recommendation to the superintendent for renewal, suspension and termination of personnel </li></ul><ul><li>Is the person with the most responsibility for school improvement, the legislature has given them more authority than in the past to operate their schools. </li></ul>
  19. 19. How the Us Constitution and Federal Government Affect Texas Schools (congress) <ul><li>Protect the individual rights, determined by the Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>Passed a statute after the Civil War to enforce the Fourteenth Amendment with two clauses from the amendment, “nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” </li></ul>
  20. 20. The Fourteenth Amendment <ul><li>Applies to public schools districts and personnel, but not to private because they are not state related (see pg 31 This is…) </li></ul>
  21. 21. Important Federal statutes <ul><li>There are number of federal statutes that directly affect the day to day operation of Texas public schools (see pg. 32) </li></ul>
  22. 22. School Finance <ul><li>School finance is a complex subject, generally beyond the scope of this book </li></ul><ul><li>In Texas, education is founded based on property taxes, equality, academic performance </li></ul>
  23. 23. Cases <ul><li>San Antonio ISD v Rodriguez </li></ul><ul><li>Edgewood ISD v Kirby </li></ul><ul><li>Lau v. Nichols </li></ul><ul><li>Pg 5 </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>,_2007_Rules_w_Occupations_Code_1701.pdf </li></ul>