• School governance, including Board of Education matters – resolution review, open meetings law, conflicts of interest, parliamentary procedure, policy and decision-making, strategic planning and hearing procedures;
  • School District’s Employee Code of Ethics (advisory opinions, enforcement)
  • Workplace investigations
  • Audits
  • General Counsel serves as Assistant Secretary and Parliamentarian for the Board of Education

Litigation Unit


  • Direct and oversee investigations of liability claims
  • Negotiate settlements of claims involving personal injury or property damage
  • Advise School District personnel concerning liability and governmental immunity issues
  • Advice regarding insurance issues, including the administration of the School District’s self-insurance plan

Torts and Civil Rights Litigation

  • Defend the School District and its employees against actions seeking damages for personal injury, property damage and civil rights violations, including appeals from administrative proceedings and suits and petitions for attorney’s fees
  • Advise School District personnel on governmental immunity, risk management, pre-suit investigations and contracts involving release and indemnity issues
  • Review and respond to subpoenas to the School District, including requests for student and employee records
  • Advice regarding use of School District facilities

Commercial and Affirmative Litigation

  • Represent the School District in litigation involving disputes arising from commercial transactions, including alleged breach of contract, payment disputes, collection actions, design and construction litigation and financial disputes with charter schools
  • Represent the School District in actions it initiates against vendors, consultants and contractors for breach of contract, shoddy work, fraud and similar claims

Labor and Employment

  • Provide legal advice concerning human resources and collective bargaining issues, including policy issues related to employee misconduct
  • Conduct employee dismissal hearings, labor arbitrations and negotiations
  • Handle administrative complaints (EEO) and civil rights cases involving labor issues

judical gavel and law book

School Law Unit

General School Law

  • Provides day-to-day legal advice to school site and central office administrators on legal issues involving students and parents, including alternative education (alternative classrooms, alternative schools, Transition programs (RETI-WRAP), accelerated programs, EOP, SMART (Saturday Morning Alternative Reach & Teach Program), athletics (Title IX, gender equity, student-athlete drug testing and codes of conduct, school district liability for sports-related injuries), attendance and truancy (ATIPS, Truancy Court, Truancy Support Center, Pick Up Program, Auto Dial telephone system, SAFE Hotline), equity and discrimination (age, disability, race, ethnic origin, gender, Title VI, Title VII, Desegregation, immigration), Community Relations (volunteers; Faith-based organizations), student discipline (including student expulsion hearings), criminal background checks, English Language Learners, court orders & policies; monitor implementation; consent decrees, child abuse reporting, divorced and separated parents, health services, home schooling, homebound services, Homeless Students (McKinney-Vento – Homeless Assistance), non-school hours services, nonpublic programs, nursing services, religion, search and seizure in schools, school safety (student safety, school violence, persistently-dangerous schools, school choice), student confidentiality, student records, student expression rights (First, Fourth, Fifth Amendment rights, due process, equal protection, search and seizure, freedom of speech, free exercise of religion, Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act “FERPA”), school police, student placement, confidentiality of health records, health-related services, drugs, contagious diseases, accommodations for health conditions, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Questioning (LGBTQ) Rights, transportation

Special Education

  • Provide advice and training to schools and administrative offices on the federal and state legal requirements relating to the identification, evaluation, programming, placement and transportation of students with disabilities, and advice to ensure compliance with these legal mandates
  • Represent the School District in special education due process matters before the Office for Dispute Resolution and in proceedings convened before the Office of Civil Rights and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and at meetings to establish students’ Individualized Education Programs
  • Coordinate and supervise the work of outside counsel representing the School District in special education due process matters

Transactional Unit

  • Provide legal advice relating to real estate and environmental matters, contracts, issues involving the design, construction, maintenance and modification of School District buildings and grounds, educational services and programs, grants development and compliance, financial matters and other School District transactions
  • Prepare and negotiate professional services contracts, technology contracts (Internet, e-mail, video, e-rate, software filters, off-campus student websites, Internet acceptable use, privacy), design and construction contracts, environmental contracts, facility services contracts, energy services contracts, educational services contracts, procurement RFPs, deeds, leases, licenses, agreements of sale relating to the sale or purchase of real estate.
  • Oversee applications, grants, amendments, audits, renewals, terminations of charters for charter schools authorized by the School District.

Open Records (Right-to-Know Law)

  • The School District’s Open Records Officer handles all requests for public records under the Pennsylvania Right-to-Know Law.