Education Law

General Counsel Services

We are lawyers for educators. Our practice is focused on assisting our school board clients in the day-to-day management of their districts, ranging from the interpretation of New York State laws and regulations, including the Education Law, the Commissioner's Regulations, the Taylor Law, the Freedom of Information Law, the Open Meetings Law, the General Municipal Law, and the like, to guidance on federal statutes such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ("IDEA"), the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act ("FERPA"), and the Americans with Disabilities Act. We provide in depth guidance and support on all matters impacting school operations, including policy matters, budget development, fiscal management, special education, staff employment and evaluations, student discipline and collective bargaining, just to name a few.

As general counsel, our firm has substantial experience handling a wide spectrum of education matters. We assist our clients with policy review and development; offer guidance on recent legislation, rule changes, and significant court rulings; and provide technical assistance to district clerks, board members and administration regarding the conduct of annual and special school district elections. We routinely respond to questions concerning layoff, tenure and seniority; reserve funds; construction matters; purchasing and procurement of goods and services; the Freedom of Information Law; the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act; the Open Meetings Law; the Americans with Disabilities Act; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1974; the Family Medical Leave Act; civil service issues; students' and employees' rights; and criminal and commercial law matters.

In addition, our partners and associates regularly represent our school district clients in all stages of administrative and court proceedings, including student discipline matters pursuant to Education Law §3214 (including manifestation determinations for special needs students); guardianship, residency, adoption, custody and Child Protective Services matters; appeals to the Commissioner of Education and the Office of State Review; school board liability issues; discrimination matters before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the State Division of Human Rights and the U.S. Department Education Office for Civil Rights; matters before the Unemployment and Workers' Compensation Boards; and a variety of matters in federal and state courts. We also have considerable experience in defending our school district clients in federal civil rights actions alleging discrimination based upon age, race, sex and/or disability.

The firm regularly assists our school district clients in negotiating and drafting architects' and construction managers' contracts, and preparing information and materials for public bids and requests for proposals. Our attorneys have provided legal assistance to our school district clients in the purchase and sale of school district property, as well as advice and counsel regarding asbestos removal from school district buildings.

Litigation Highlights

  • We successfully defended a recent federal lawsuit challenging a school district's refusal to grant a religious exemption to the Public Health Law requirement that students be immunized against certain diseases.
  • In another recent federal case, we persuaded the court to dismiss an employee's claim that his First Amendment rights had been violated when the District failed to promote him.
  • In one of our more unusual cases, we successfully defended a school district in an appeal to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals upholding the school district's right to insist on parental notice of student pregnancy.
  • We have also defended a school district against claims of First, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment violations regarding the collection of school taxes.

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Events Calendar
  • Friday, April 8, 2022
    10:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
    2022 Annual School Law Conference
    Sponsored by the Education Law Committees of Suffolk and Nassau County Bar Associations
    As well as the Suffolk & Nassau Academies of Law

    Jacob S. Feldman, Esq., Frazer & Feldman, LLP
    Christie Jacobson, Esq., Frazer & Feldman, LLP
    Joseph Lilly, Esq., Frazer & Feldman, LLP
    Dennis O’Brien, Esq., Frazer & Feldman, LLP

    Topics will include: “Deal or No Deal” - Disciplinary Proceedings in Cyberspace; Special Education “Jeopardy!” – Navigating the Perils of Spe-cial Education Ethics One Question at Time; and “Let’s Make a Deal” – Negotiating in the Post Pandemic.

  • March 30, 2022
    Freedom of Information Law (“FOIL”) Training Seminar

    Christie R. Jacobson held a client training seminar on the New York State Freedom of Information Law (“FOIL”) for all school board members, Superintendents of Schools, interested school administrators, Records Access Officers, FOIL Appeals Officers, and district clerks. For more information, please go to the Client Memoranda tab of our website for a recording of the seminar.

  • February 11, 2022
    On-Line Seminar
    9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    IEP and 504 Plan Legal Workshop

    Jack Feldman will be presenting a seminar on the IEP Development Process: Handling Difficult Issues and Key Considerations for Implementing IEPs. The seminar will address IDEA evaluation report essentials; IEP Meetings; creating measurable IEP goals and progress requirements; who should receive a copy of IEPs and what form should it be; and what to do when IEPs aren’t working. For additional information, please visit

  • Wednesday, February 16, 2022
    Webinar: Social Media Ethics for School Attorneys
    When lawyers use social media, what ethical rules apply? And how?

    Time: Noon to 1:00 p.m.
    Price: $110 per person

    Christie R. Jacobson will co-present a seminar on the topic of school attorneys and their law firms are using social media platforms such as LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter to connect with both current and prospective clients. However, as with all other forms of attorney advertising, they must remain mindful of potentially serious ethical implications. For example, Rule 7.1 of the New York Rules of Professional Conduct governs attorney and law firm advertisements, including content published on the Internet and via social media. This webinar will review the rules governing social media ethics and their application to attorneys who practice education law. For more information and to register, please visit

  • December 9, 2021
    On-Line Seminar
    9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    New York Special Education Law

    Jack Feldman will be presenting a seminar on Special Education Law in New York. The seminar will address the increasing number of students qualifying for special education services. Professionals working with special needs children know that an understanding of special education law is crucial. You need to know the law in order to deal with complex questions that arise on a regular basis. Who pays when a special needs child is placed in private schooling at the parents' election? How can a school create the least restrictive environment and promote inclusion to the best interests of all students? It can be costly if you don't know. For additional information, please visit

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