With the 2019-2020 school year beginning, school personnel must be mindful of changes in the law and best practices related to student health and safety. Interested in learning more? Join us next Tuesday, August 27, 2019, at 12:00pm central time for a complimentary continuing legal education webinar. Register here.
One of the issues we will discuss is vaccinations. Every state has law mandating vaccines for students, but every state also has at least one exemption to mandatory vaccines. The majority of recent vaccination cases arise from challenges to the religious, philosophical, or personal belief exemptions. Schools in each state should stay up-to-date on the current vaccination policies and make sure school policies reflect a clear understanding of state and federal law. Once policies are updated, schools should ensure these policies are readily available to all stakeholders and implemented consistently.
Student mental health issues are also on the rise in schools on college campuses across the country. Many courts have said educational institutions have a duty to provide adequate mental health resources and a duty to prevent a foreseeable student suicide. A failure to fulfill this duty can lead to litigation against educational institutions. Our webinar will also discuss statutory requirements for colleges and universities regarding mental health services provided to students.
Alcohol and Other Drugs
There has been an increase of litigation related to student life, particularly involving hazing and alcohol and other drugs (AOD). Schools may be liable for negligence in causing injury to students and other injuries arising because of hazing or initiation rituals related to membership in organized clubs or associations such as student organizations, sports teams, and bands. The webinar will detail best practices, an in-depth look into the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989, and suggestions for AOD policies.