Project Description

CSBA Legal Office and

Education Legal Alliance

Society is trying to answer many complicated questions and boards of education are at the forefront of navigating the various perspectives held by the public. CSBA’s Legal Department works to provide board members with information and resources that help them navigate those perspectives in a more accessible and efficient manner. CSBA’s attorneys keep members informed by staying up to date on changes in the law and decisions in state and federal courts and reviewing events with a focus on historical context to understand why changes are occurring and what may come in the future.

The Legal team works to ensure the diverse perspectives of all members throughout the state are represented in informational materials. When considering the potential involvement of the Education Legal Alliance (ELA), the significance of the issue is evaluated, ensuring it is of statewide concern and the outcome will benefit all CSBA members.

Year in Review

  • Produced “Recently Asked Questions: Parental and student rights in relation to transgender and gender nonconforming students” for boards of education to use when considering the ever-evolving issues of transgender student and parent rights.
  • Updated The Brown Act book and the Guide to Reporting Gifts.
  • Produced 11 newsletter articles, 21 blog posts and four magazine columns on various topics such as Supreme Court decisions, changes in the law and developments within the ELA.
  • Used the resources of CSBA’s ELA to support local educational agencies in various matters of statewide concern, including filing a Writ of Mandate and Complaint for Declaratory Relief in the Sacramento County Superior Court asking the court to:
    • Set aside the decision by the State Board of Education that reversed the denials of the Mayacamas Charter Middle School petition by the governing boards of Napa Valley USD and Napa COE; and to determine the rights and legal duties of all the parties involved with charter school petitions and appeals. The ELA and the district were successful in their lawsuits challenging the State Board’s application of AB 1505 and are now moving forward in defending the lower court’s decision in the appeals process.
  • The ELA also filed an amicus brief in the case of O’Connor-Ratcliff v. Garnier at the United States Supreme Court arguing in support of board members and seeking clarity on the use of social media to engage with members of the public.