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Fort Lauderdale Education Law Blog

Is special education falling short in preparing students to go out into the world?

One of the things parents hope their children’s education at school will do is help prepare their kids to succeed out in the world. Statistics raise some questions as to how effective special education here in the U.S. is at doing this for special needs students.

For one, data indicates that students who receive special education have much lower rates of graduating on-time from high school than their peers. Reportedly, 65 percent of special education students here in U.S. get their high school diploma on-schedule. Meanwhile, the rate for American students overall is 83 percent.

Bill regarding school bullying proposed in Florida

Certain things can pose barriers to a child’s ability to succeed at school and get the high-quality learning experience they deserve. Among these is being bullied. So, how schools here in Florida address bullying can be remarkably impactful. So too can what rules and regulations the state has related to school bullying and what options are available for victims of bullying.

Recently, a bill has been proposed which would make some additions to the state’s laws and rules on bullying. The bill would put some new options in place for victims of bullying.

Survey: Stress, mental health challenges high among today’s educators

It appears that feeling a lot of stress at work is pretty common among today’s teachers.

A recent survey polled educators on issues related to stress and mental health. The survey results indicate that finding work to be “often” or “always” stressful is something that 61 percent of educators and school staff report.

Special-education-related guidance documents rescinded

Among the things that could influence how school districts act when it comes to special education matters is what the federal government has said on the matters. There are many issues related to special education that the federal government has laws and rules on. The federal government sometimes issues guidance documents on these laws and rules. These documents are typically aimed at providing explanations of what schools and school districts are supposed to do to comply with these laws and regulations.

Recently, the U.S. Department of Education decided to rescind some of these documents. Specifically, 72 guidance documents related to special education and rehabilitation services were withdrawn. The bulk of these documents were from the Office of Special Education Programs.

Education and the amendment process for the Florida Constitution

There are many rules here in Florida regarding education. Some of them touch on what rights students, teachers and parents have. Others deal with what obligations and requirements schools are subject to. Understanding what such rules apply to their situation and what the rules mean for their options can be very important for a parent or teacher when they are in a dispute with a school district. So, these are among the topics a parent or teacher may wish to discuss with an experienced education lawyer when such a dispute comes up.

The education rules in the state can come from various sources. For one, they can come from state legislation. Also, they can come from the state’s constitution. Might this constitution soon be seeing some changes in its terms related to education? It’s possible, given a process that is currently occurring in Florida.

Are “intensely segregated” schools becoming more common in Florida?

We live in a state which is growing in diversity. One would hope schools in the state would embrace this diversity and that all students in Florida, whatever their race and background, would be able to enjoy a high-quality education environment. Unfortunately though, concerning race-related issues can sometimes come up in connection to schools.

One such issue is discrimination. A student can be greatly harmed when they are subjected to racial discrimination at school. There are, thankfully, measures parents can take in response when they suspect that their child has been discriminated against at school based on their race. However, parents can sometimes encounter difficulties when pursuing such measures. Education attorneys can give parents guidance on what they can do when such challenges arise to help further their goals for putting a stop to discrimination.

Cyberbullying prevention steps parents can take

Children can be greatly harmed by bullying. So, bullying prevention is incredibly important. The month of October is specially focused on spreading awareness of the importance of such prevention. That is because this month is the home of the campaign National Bullying Prevention Month.

So, this month can be a good time for parents to review some of the actions they can take to try to protect their children from bullying. One form of bullying which has become increasingly present in the lives of students lately is cyberbullying. A recent Florida Today article went over steps parents can take to try to help keep their child safe from cyberbullying. Such steps include:

Report: Florida one of the worst states for teachers

A teacher’s life and career can be affected by a great many things. This includes the legal issues that come up for them over the course of their career. There are a variety of things that could lead to a teacher facing impactful legal matters. This includes being accused of misconduct by a student, parent or the school they are with. Standing up for one’s rights in the face of such allegations can have many complex aspects. Skilled attorneys can guide teachers through this complicated, impactful and sometimes confusing process.

Teachers can also be impacted quite a bit by conditions in the state they teach in. States vary greatly in the laws, policies, economic conditions and overall circumstances they have related to education and their school systems. So, teachers in different states can be in very different overall situations.

Report points to racial disparity in out-of-school suspensions

The disciplinary measures schools take can have major impacts on students. So, one would hope all schools would act fairly in their disciplinary decisions. One would certainly hope schools would take great care to not let discrimination, such as racial discrimination, seep into such decisions.

Among the things that can raise serious questions and concerns as to whether racial bias and discrimination are playing a role in school disciplinary actions are major racial disparities when it comes to the use of a given school disciplinary measure.

Teacher pay in the U.S.

How does the U.S. compare to other countries when it comes to teacher pay? A recent Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development report suggests it’s something of a mixed bag. The report was on education issues and looked at OECD members (the U.S is a member) and certain partner countries.

On one hand, the report found the U.S. to be among the countries at the top for starting teacher pay. It found the average starting pay for elementary school teachers here in America to be around $42,500. This is over $10,000 higher than the average among OECD countries.