Labor & Employment Law

Labor Counsel Services


In our capacity as labor counsel to our school district clients, we are responsible for working with each Board and administration to develop collective bargaining proposals, negotiate and administer collective bargaining agreements, and resolve related disputes, grievances and arbitrations. Additionally, we defend and, at times, initiate proceedings before PERB, and handle all other labor-related litigation, including employee discipline matters pursuant to Education Law §3020-a and Civil Service Law §75.

At the outset of the negotiations process, we make it a practice to meet with the Superintendent and designated administrators to determine what, if any, problems have arisen in the particular bargaining unit during the term of the current contract. Based on this preliminary information, we meet with the Board to determine the Board's negotiations priorities, and to discuss final proposals and negotiation strategies. During the course of negotiations, we update our clients on the status of negotiations either with memoranda to the board of education or attendance at board meetings.

A school district's employees are both its greatest asset and its greatest expense. We understand the concerns and constraints faced by our Board clients as they attempt to maximize their district's educational program while exercising fiscal responsibility. We pride ourselves on our record of achieving significant improvements for our clients through collective bargaining without sacrificing excellent employer-employee relationships that, once lost, are extremely difficult to regain.

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Events Calendar
  • UPCOMING EVENTS
  • April 23, 2017

    On April 23, 2017, Timothy Mahoney will be presenting at LRP’s 38th National Institute on Legal Issues of Educating Individuals with Disabilities. There he will present “Addressing Bullying in the IEP,” reviewing the effects of the 2d Circuit’s 2016 landmark decision of T.K. v. New York City Department of Education and Judge Weinstein’s four-prong test to determine when bullying constitutes a denial of FAPE, offering insights into IEP-based responses to bullying — both for the victim and assailant, and addressing schoolwide and districtwide prevention strategies available to school districts to address bullying.


  • RECENT EVENTS
  • IEPs and 504 Plans: A Legal Compliance Guide Seminar

    December 6-7, 2016

    On December 7, 2016, Jack Feldman presented a program on 504 plans on behalf of National Business Institute. 504 plans, like IEPs, are essential tools to ensure positive learning outcomes for many students. They also have the potential to cause legal issues for schools if they aren't properly planned and carried out. The seminar addressed creating legally compliant 504 plans, addressed tricky eligibility questions, and provided guidance to avoid common pitfalls under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. www.nbi-sems.com.

  • RESIDENCE INN PLAINVIEW, 9 GERHARD ROAD, PLAINVIEW, NY 11803

    Friday, October 21, 2016

    Jack Feldman will conduct a full-day seminar on "Developing a Bulletproof IEP." The program will cover IDEA and its regulations, as well as the New York State Regulations. It is important for those working in special education to keep up to date with procedures for conducting a CSE meeting and developing a defensible, bulletproof IEP. This seminar aims to provide a comprehensive, one-day approach to the impact of IDEA on New York Special Education Law, for those working within the education system. Administrators, board members, regular and special educators, related service providers, counselors, psychologists, and social workers will find this seminar invaluable and are encouraged to attend. The seminar is sponsored by PESI. The seminar will also cover discipline for students with disabilities, including a discussion about the standards to be applied in manifestation determinations and when and why FBAs should be conducted and BIPs developed and reviewed. The seminar will also cover initial referrals, evaluations, medical diagnoses, classification and more. For additional information visit www.PESI.com.

  • NYSSBA Annual Conference

    October 28, 2016

    Florence Frazer and Jack Feldman will be presenting at the New York State School Board Association's upcoming Annual Convention. On October 28, 2016, Florence will participate in a clinic on "Educator Discipline - How are the New Rules Working?" New Rules that went into effect last year have been changing the way in which school boards approach the discipline of tenured teachers and administrators, and how hearing officers are conducting section 3020-a disciplinary proceedings. Hear from seasoned attorneys about some of the lessons learned this past year. Find out about the legal and practical issues school boards need to be mindful of moving forward. On October 29, 2016, Jack will participate in a clinic on "Special Education - What is New?" There, find out how recent developments are changing school district responsibilities for the education of students with disabilities. What are the current and emerging challenges facing districts in this area of law? Hear the issues school boards and their administrators need to know about to appropriately serve their disabled students. For more information, visit NYSSBA.

  • DISCIPLINE OF STUDENTS WITH BEHAVIORAL ISSUES

    June 14, 2016

    On June 14, 2016, Jack Feldman, Laura Ferrugiari and Timothy Mahoney presented a full day program on the discipline of students with disabilities who have behavioral issues. The seminar included an overview of the applicable laws regarding IDEA, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and jurisdiction of the federal government vs. state government. Discussions regarding FBAs and BIPs; when and why FBAs should be conducted; BIPs and their relation to IEPs, 504 Behavior Management Plans and Section 504. Although no educator enjoys it, disciplining students is a common part of any school day and can create complicated legal dilemmas. Moreover, disciplining students whose misbehavior is a manifestation of their disabilities is also all too common, giving rise to a series of legal issues. These situations require copious and accurate documentation, and this documentation has to be legally sound. This program is designed for teachers, principals and vice principals, counselors, psychologists social workers, school nurses, special education providers, school administrators, attorneys and paralegals. For more information visit www.nbi-sems.com.


  • Permissible Drug Use: The Administration of Medication in the School Setting

    April 2016

    We are pleased to announce that an article written by Laura Ferrugiari and Tim Mahoney has been featured in the Nassau County Bar Association's monthly newspaper, The Nassau Lawyer. The article, entitled "Permissible Drug Use: The Administration of Medication in the School Setting," reviews the administration of medication in emergency circumstances in school, and advises districts about who is authorized to administer emergency medication and under what circumstances.



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