High Court Cases Could Mean Big Changes for Cities, Townships, Villages

The United States Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in two cases that may significantly impact local government. One case pits First Amendment free speech rights against the right of a local legislative body to control its meetings. The second case challenges a rule established in 1977 requiring public employees to pay “fair share” union dues where an employee chooses not to join the union. Both arguments involved very active questioning by the justices and could result in changes in the law in late spring or early summer. [More]

Responding to parent requests for video footage in light of federal student privacy laws

The Family Policy Compliance Office (“FPCO”) now offers school districts a tentative framework for responding to parents’ requests for videos. Often such footage – a security video of a cafeteria fight, for example – includes images of multiple students, which may all be individually protected by FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. For years, school districts struggled with how to handle such requests, what to release, to whom, and what to redact, if anything. [More]