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The Legal Rights and Responsibilities of Teachers
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The Legal Rights and Responsibilities of Teachers
Issues of Employment and Instruction


Other Titles in:
Education | Legal Issues

May 2012 | 352 pages | Corwin
Most teacher education programs offer little, if any, instruction on Education Law. Consequently, teachers (in general) are not well-versed in the intricacies of the law as it applies to their own employment and their responsibilities as instructors. In light of this dearth of information about law by most teachers, this book is designed as an easy-to-read, practical manual that addresses the key legal issues that teachers confront on a daily basis. While many books on the market are aimed at school administrators, few are designed primarily for teachers. Those that are, tend to be overly broad in scope. This book, then, intends to help fill that gap by providing a concise, practical guide that specifically targets the areas of the law that are of most concern to teachers.

In the employment context, the book intends to present information about teacher certification, employment, tenure, evaluation, and dismissal along with issues related to collective bargaining and teacher contracts. The book will also review the constitutional rights of teachers, including freedom of speech and religion. In addition, the book plans to provide information on how teachers can avoid liability when dealing with discrimination and harassment based on race, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, or disability, regardless of whether it is at the hands of supervisors, peers, or students.

In the instructional domain the book is designed to explore the rights and responsibilities teachers have in the instructional process. This will include topics such as what can and cannot be taught, academic freedom, methodology, grading policies, student records, and copyright law. Information will be provided about tort liability and the teacher's responsibilities regarding the safety and well-being of his or her students as well as his or her own protections from defamation and rights of self-defense.

 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Authors
 
1. Introduction: The Historical and Legal Foundations of Public Education
Introduction  
A Brief History of Public Education in America  
Legal Fundamentals of Education  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
2. School Governance and the Teacher
Introduction  
The Role of the Federal Government  
State Education Agencies  
Local School Boards  
School Finance and Use of Property  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
3. Basic Constitutional Rights and Freedoms
Introduction  
First Amendment Rights  
Privacy  
Due Process  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
4. Employment Terms and Conditions
Introduction  
Teacher Certification or Licensure  
Privacy Rights of Teachers  
Salaries and Terms of Employment  
Leaves of Absence  
Teacher Evaluations  
Resignations  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
5. Collective Bargaining
Introduction  
Historical Background  
Bargaining Units and Their Composition  
Union Rights  
Dispute Resolution  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
6. Prohibitions Against Employment Discrimination
Introduction  
Race, Color, Ethnicity, or National Origin  
Gender  
Religion  
Disability  
Age  
Genetic Information  
Retaliation  
Affirmative Action  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
7. Teacher Discipline, Dismissal, and Due Process
Introduction  
Tenure Rights  
Progressive Discipline and Dismissal of Teachers  
Reduction in Force  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
8. Curricular and Instructional Issues
Introduction  
Control of the Curriculum and Academic Freedom  
Student Records  
Copyright Law  
Using Technology in the Classroom  
Special Education and Programs for English Language Learners  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
What's Next  
Endnotes  
 
9. Tort Liability
Introduction  
Definitions and Types of Torts  
Educational Malpractice  
Civil Rights Violations  
Summary and Recommendations  
Frequently Asked Questions  
Endnotes  
 
Resource A: Court Systems and the Authority of Courts
Functions and Duties of the Courts  
Organization of the Federal Court System  
State Courts  
Court Jurisdictions  
 
Resource B: Legal Resources and References
Laws and Regulations  
Court Decisions  
Understanding Legal Citations  
 
Resource C: Basic Legal Research: Maintaining Currency in an Evolving Legal Environment
Keeping Abreast of Legal Developments  
Useful Education Law Websites  
 
Glossary of Terms, Acronyms, and Abbreviations
 
Index

"Now teachers have an absolute desk-reference that could be called 'How to Stay in the Classroom and Out of the Courtroom!'"

John Casper, District Achievement Gap Coordinator
Kentucky Department of Education

"A clear understanding of rights and obligations allows teachers to approach their jobs with confidence, and will allay any fears based on rumor or misconceptions of the law."

Karen L. Fernandez, Teacher
Denver Center for International Studies

"Reading this book is the next best thing to taking a class on educational law. It could well serve as the resource for such a class!"

Deanna Brunlinger, Science Teacher
Elkhorn Area High School, WI

"Uses real-world applications and issues to apply legal concepts and tested decisions to the entire educator environment. Chapters are packed with legal references and anotations for further research and clarifications."

James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
The Midwest Book Review, August 2011

Sample Materials & Chapters

Osborne_Legal_Rights_preface

Osborne_Legal_Rights_Ch1


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Allan G. Osborne, Jr.

Allan G. Osborne, Jr. is the retired principal of the Snug Harbor Community School in Quincy, Massachusetts, a nationally recognized Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. During his 34 years in public education, he served as a special education teacher, a director of special education, an assistant principal, and a principal. He has also served as an adjunct professor of special education and education law at several colleges, including Bridgewater State University and American International University.Osborne earned an EdD in educational leadership from Boston College and an MEd in special education from Fitchburg State College (now Fitchburg... More About Author

Charles J. Russo

Charles J. Russo, JD, EdD, is the Joseph Panzer Chair in Education in the School of Education and Allied Professions and adjunct professor in the School of Law at the University of Dayton. He was the 1998–1999 president of the Education Law Association and 2002 recipient of its McGhehey (Achievement) Award. He has authored or coauthored more than 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals; has authored, coauthored, edited, or coedited 40 books; and has in excess of 800 publications. Russo also speaks extensively on issues in education law in the United States and abroad.Along with having spoken in 33 states and 25 nations on 6 continents,... More About Author

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