2023 Annual School Law Seminar


2023 Annual School Law Seminar

Heritage Center of Brooklyn Center
6155 Earle Brown Drive, Brooklyn Center, Minnesota
Friday, October 27, 2023




8:00 a.m.

Registration & Coffee

8:30 a.m.


Joe Langel

8:35 – 9:05 a.m.

The More Things Change: Schools’ Obligations Under the New Title IX Regulations

In April 2023, the Office for Civil Rights announced revisions to the regulations implementing Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.  From new definitions to new procedures, this presentation will address the impact that these new regulations have on schools and provide guidance on how to implement the new regulations and reduce the risk of liability for failing to comply with Title IX.

9:05 – 9:40 a.m.

A Whole New Meaning to “Taking a Smoke Break”: Cannabis Restrictions in the Workplace

Recreational cannabis use was legalized this year.  That reversal in longstanding state law gave rise to changes in the Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act (DATWA) and altered the availability of adverse employment actions based on off-duty cannabis use.  This presentation covers what schools need to know regarding what they can and cannot do with employees who use or consume cannabis products.

9:40 – 10:15 a.m.

The Death of Discipline: New Legislation Impacting Schools

The 2023 sweeping education bill Governor Tim Walz signed into law in May made substantial changes to the allowable discipline of students.  We will review these historic changes including allowable restraints, the impact on School Resource Officers and more.  This presentation will also cover changes that may need to be made to current policies, procedures, practices, and forms used by schools.

10:15 – 10:30 a.m.


10:30 – 11:05 a.m.

Are There Any Management Rights Left? PELRA after the 2023 Legislative Session

This presentation will address the myriad changes to the Public Employment Labor Relations Ac (PELRA), including new mandatory subjects of bargaining, changes to the definition of public employee, how union dues are handled, union right to access employer facilities and information on employees, unfair labor practices and more.

11:05 – 11:35 a.m.

Your Questions Answered: A Panel Discussion of Hot Topics in Special Education

From child find to placements, and from extracurricular activities to transportation, state, and federal laws regarding the provision of special education to students with disabilities affect all aspects of a school.  In this presentation, three experienced school attorneys will provide practical, real-world advice about common (and not-so-common) special education issues facing schools in the 2023-2024 school year.

11:35 – 12:30 p.m.

Lunch Break

If you have pre-ordered a boxed lunch, it will be available to be picked up outside Carriage Hall A.  A list of local restaurants is available at the registration table.




12:30 p.m.

Artificial Intelligence in Schools – Rise of the Machines?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a rapidly advancing industry with immediate and lasting impacts on schools and society in general. AI makes it possible for machines to learn from experience, adjust to new inputs, and perform human-like tasks. This presentation will evaluate potential opportunities and risks associated with the advancement of AI in the school setting.

Data-touille: Stewing on legal Issues in Data Practices

The ever-evolving landscape of government data practices and data requests can pose a practical headache for school districts and charter schools. How did the recent legislative session impact directory data? What should you do if a school employee is subpoenaed to testify in a custody dispute? Are health office notes really educational data? How should you handle broad-sweeping data requests? We’ve done the stewing, so you can focus on the schooling. Learn the answers to these questions and more in this informative and engaging deep dive into data practices.

1:10 p.m.

Can I List My Cat as a Family Member? Navigating The New Minnesota Employee Safe and Sick Time and Paid Family and Medical Leave Acts

Whether you are a “cat person,” a “dog person,” or just astonished by the foregoing question as it relates to employee paid leave, these are the types of issues rapidly popping up in public schools in light of the 2023 Minnesota legislative session. This presentation focuses on the obligations of schools under the recently enacted Minnesota Employee Safe and Sick Time and Paid Family and Medical Leave Acts. We will provide clarity as to the differences between these two laws, when their various provisions take effect and how they interact, factors that determine when an employee is eligible for paid leave, including who is considered a “family member”, the process for administering paid leave and many other critical employment issues. The answers may surprise you.

Volatile and Violent Students: The 45-Day Placement and Other Tools to Ensure a Safe School Environment in Difficult Situations

In this session, we will discuss practical strategies for removing students with disabilities when their behavior is stemming from their disability. We will work through a recent case to illustrate the analysis your teams will want to use and how to implement the removal or change of placement to keep the student and the school community safe.

1:50 p.m.

Responding to the Emboldened Teacher Bargaining Proposals Ignited by the 2023 Legislation

The 2023 Legislative session brought about unprecedented changes to the employment rights of teachers.  More teachers gained the right not only to belong to the teacher bargaining unit but to attain continuing contract or tenure rights.  Unions have become more aggressive in seeking class size limits, increases in support staffing and input on testing and e-learning.  What landmines lie ahead with upcoming changes to state mandated paid leaves?  How can schools respond to demands for huge increases in salaries and benefits based on the legislatively promised “historical” increases to school funding?  You have questions. We have answers.  Join us as we review these and other legislative changes and provide practical advice to assist your bargaining team.

Digging in Deeper: Conducting School Investigations in Tricky Times

School investigations can be difficult to navigate, and they aren’t getting easier.  Schools must apply the fact-finding procedures of several policies and laws to the same conduct, each of which call for different processes, inquires and timelines.  Mix in the complexity of the contractual and statutory rights of employees and students, many of which have been modified during the 2023 legislative session, and your head might spin. This presentation will provide practical guidance on how to approach investigations by offering helpful solutions to the real-life scenarios facing schools today.

2:30 p.m.



We are pleased to welcome our new associates Cameron Fox, Tim Anderson, Selom Aboni and Lauren Kingsbeck