Legal Analysts

Showing posts with label title vi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label title vi. Show all posts

Thursday, October 26, 2023

NYS Amended the Education Law to Prohibit Corporal Punishment in Private Schools

On October 25th, 2023 Governor Hochul signed A05010 to amend New York State's education law to prohibit religious private school and non-religious private schools from using corporal punishment on students. This amendments is effective as of October 25th, 2023. 

The bill discusses how every two years, the US Department of Education asks every public school in the country to report on the number of students it has physically punished during the previous year. In an analysis of that data it was revealed that males, young persons of color and students diagnosed with a disability are significantly more likely to be the victims of this abuse by their teachers and school administrators.

If you are  male, person of color, or have been diagnosed with a disability and received corporal punishment at a private school in New York within the last year, you may have a claim for discrimination under New York City Human Rights Law ("NYS Human Rights Law").  

If you are a maleperson of color, or have been diagnosed with a disability and received corporal punishment at a private school in New York not within a year you may still have a national claim. 

For males who were enrolled in a religious private school in the last 3 years you may be able to submit gender discrimination claim under Title VI claim. However, Title VI does not include emotional distress damages.  

For persons of color who were enrolled in a private school in the last 4 years you may be able to bring a disparate treatment case, under 1981 and get emotional distress damages. You may also be able to submit a Title VI claim but this won't include emotional distress damages. 

For persons with a diagnosed disability who were enrolled in a private school in the last 3 years you may be able to bring a claim under the Americans with Disability Act and are not limited to non-emotional distress damages. 

If you are not a New York resident you still may have a national claim under Title VI, 1981, and/or Americans with Disability Act. Check your state's local laws to see if you potentially have a claim under state law. 

To read more about this amendment to the education law click here

Friday, June 30, 2023

Court TV: Supreme Court's Ruling on Race-Conscious Admissions: Analysis with Andrew Lieb

Supreme Court bans affirmative action in college admissions. Court TV brought on Attorney Andrew Lieb to discuss this controversial decision that has ignited fierce debates among legal scholars, university administrators, and students alike.

Role of Race in Admissions:

Lieb highlighted Justice Roberts' perspective that race can continue to play a role in university admissions, as long as it contributes to an individual's character. This view serves as a counterpoint to those who believe the ruling is a complete withdrawal of rights.

Overlooking Other Forms of Preferential Treatment:

The interview also focused on the court's omission of other types of preferential treatment in admissions, such as donations and legacies. Lieb clarified that the case was brought under the Equal Protection Clause and Title VI, which do not pertain to these other factors on their face, suggesting the need for legislative changes.

Maintaining Diversity Post Ruling:

Lieb provided some forward-looking advice to universities. To meet the court's new criteria and maintain diversity, universities could provide a definite end date for their programs and demonstrate how a diverse student body enhances the exchange of ideas. 

Diverse Perspectives on the Ruling:

The panelists on Court TV offered varied views on the ruling. While some perceived it as less severe than anticipated, others criticized the court for appearing detached from the realities of racial disparities in education and overturning established precedents.

Friday, May 06, 2022

Education Discrimination & Your Rights - What Victims Should Know

Education discrimination is illegal throughout the United States and in certain states, like New York, there are even greater protections, rights, and damages available to victims and their parents. 

When it comes to education, you and your child have a right to be free from harassment, bullying and other forms of wrongful discrimination that is perpetrated by teachers, the administration, or even other students (your peers). This applies to public schools, non-religious private schools, colleges and universities. Simply, you and your child can't be denied a right to learn because of who you are. 

Anti-discrimination laws in education apply regardless of whether the discrimination is explicit or implicit. While we've all heard about equal access to sports between the sexes / genders, or even teachers having sex with their students, discrimination lawsuits more commonly concern bullying of minorities, the failure to give testing accommodations to disabled students, and, even, the failure to extend days off to religious observers. Simply, it is the administration's duty to make education equally accessible to all and this failure can result in a lawsuit.  

On the federal level, Title IX of the Educational Amendments protects against sex discrimination while Title VI of the Civil Rights Act addresses race, color, and national origin discrimination, and finally Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects against disability discrimination. However, these federal laws on education discrimination were just limited by the Supreme Court and can, mostly, no longer result in victims receiving emotional distress or punitive damages.

Nonetheless, states, like New York, provide victims with the right to recover for their emotional distress and punitive damages. Moreover, New York adds protections by covering victims of discrimination with respect to additional categories, such as race, color, religion, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age and marital status. New York even makes clear that it's own public school districts can be held accountable for discrimination based on an amendment to its laws from July 25, 2019, A3425.

If you or your child were a victim of education discrimination, it is important to act quickly and file your claim after hiring a lawyer. In New York State, claims against public school districts must be filed within 3 months after the discriminatory event. While the State's anti-discrimination laws otherwise provide up to 3 years for lawsuits against non-public schools (i.e., private schools / colleges / universities), it's nonetheless important to act quickly to preserve all the discriminatory evidence (i.e., audio / video), which is done by immediately sending what is known as a spoliation notice.

To be clear, discrimination victims, in New York, can recover compensatory damages (being made whole with emotional distress damages), punitive damages (punishment damages), and your attorneys' fees. The perpetrator can lose their license (if licensed as educators or otherwise), be required to take trainings, and be ordered to stop their offensive behavior. There are fines and more. Discrimination is wrong and must be stopped. 

Don't be afraid to speak-up. If you are advancing an anti-discrimination right for yourself or your child, you are protected from retaliation. Even if it is ultimately found that you or your child was not discriminated against, you both can nonetheless be compensated for facing unlawful coercion, intimidation, threats, or other types of interference with your anti-discrimination rights. Again, this is not just true if you are advancing your own rights, it also applies if you are raising your child's rights, or another student's rights, because anti-retaliation laws protect anyone who aids and/or encourages someone else in exercising their rights to be free from discrimination. 

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