- Appellate Proceedings
- Education General Counsel Services
- Education Labor and Employment Law
- Education Litigation
- Public Records and Open Meetings
- Special Education Law
- Student Issues
- Sunshine Law and Public Records
- The University of Akron School of Law, J.D., 2003
- Kent State University, B.A. Ed., 1998, summa cum laude
Licensed to Practice
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
Kathy focuses her practice on special education law, school law, and labor and employment. She provides counsel to boards of education in relation to special education and Section 504, student services, student discipline, residency and custody, student records and confidentiality, public records requests and sunshine law issues, employee leave, discipline and termination, and constitutional issues arising in education. In addition to providing general counsel to school boards as issues arise, Kathy frequently provides training and in-services in each of these areas. While providing preventive measures such as in-services, reviewing IEPs and ETRs for legal compliance, attending IEP and ETR team meetings, representing boards of education in direct requests for mediation, and issuing guidance relating to systemic and programmatic matters, Kathy also handles all aspects of litigation relating to student issues. She has represented boards of education in student matters before the Ohio Department of Education and U.S. Department of Education, and in state and federal court. Kathy also handles employment and general board litigation, and has represented boards of education in these matters before the EEOC, OCRC, and state and federal court.
- Represents school districts with respect to the development of legally defensible IEPs and ETRs and all aspects of IDEA procedural compliance.
- Attends IEP and ETR meetings on behalf of school districts to provide legal support to teams in difficult situations.
- Assisted school districts with development of policies/procedures for Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
- Assists school districts with development of procedures for independent educational evaluations.
- Counsels and trained districts regarding special education laws and regulations.
- Defends and pursues due process actions on behalf of districts.
- Defends and negotiates resolution agreements in proceedings before the Ohio and United States Departments of Education.
- Amicably resolved special education disputes both prior to and during litigation.
- Conducts compliance audits of special education files.
LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT
- Represents school districts in proceedings before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Ohio Civil Rights Commission with respect to claims of race, sex, age, gender and disability discrimination.
- Represents clients in federal court involving claims of race, sex, age, gender and disability discrimination.
- Represents school districts in teacher termination and discipline proceedings.
- Represents school districts in proceedings regarding discipline and termination of classified employees.
- Counsels clients regarding compliance with the ADA, FMLA, FLSA, ADEA and other employment laws.
- Represents school districts in student discipline proceedings before boards of education, appointed designees and in appeals to court.
- Represented school districts in federal court litigation involving alleged violations of constitutional rights and Section 1983 (e.g., bullying, harassment, etc.)
- Counsels school districts regarding residency and custody disputes.
- Assists school districts with responses to requests for educational records.
- Counsels school districts regarding obligations under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
SUNSHINE LAW & PUBLIC RECORDS
- Counsels school districts faced with voluminous public record requests and responded to same on behalf of clients.
- Counsels school districts on various aspects of compliance with Ohio’s Open Meetings Act. Represented districts in court regarding public record and sunshine law claims.
EDUCATION – GENERAL COUNSEL
- Assists school districts with policy review and development.
- Reviews contracts on behalf of school districts and negotiates vendor contracts on behalf of school districts.
- School Closure Clarification Released
- Don’t Toss Your Cap Yet: What it Means to be “On Track” to Graduate
- Interpreting the Ohio Department of Education’s Guidance Regarding Students with Disabilities During the State’s School-Building Closure
- Students with Disabilities and Team Considerations During the COVID-19 Crisis
- COVID-19 and District Obligations to Students with Disabilities
- State Bans Vape Pens on School Buses and Calls for Drivers to Wait at Bus Stops
- The pendulum swing for personal liability in IDEA violation lawsuits
- Ohio’s Anti-Hazing Law: A Call to Action for School Districts
- ETR/IEP Legal Update and Medical Marijuana at Summit Co. ESC, May 2019
- IEP/ETR Compliance
- IEP/504 Plans, NBI Seminars, May 2019
- Residency/Custody/Homeless Students, Juvenile and Family Law Symposium, December 2018
- Compliance Officer Training and Conducting Investigations, March 2018
- Student Possession and Use of Medical Marijuana Under Ohio’s New Medical Marijuana Law and Regulations, Educational Service Center of Cuyahoga County, March 2018
- Ohio School Boards Association’s Ohio Council of School Board Attorneys
- Ohio State Bar Association
- Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
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