TYLA Tuesday: Educating Educators

One big question that comes up when work-life balance is discussed, is “How do you work, have a family, and give time to your community?” There are many answers to this question, but one great way to do it is to share existing Texas Young Lawyers Association projects. Anyone can do it (you don’t have to be a “young” lawyer), materials can be obtained through our website or by contacting the TYLA office.  We even have guides to give you an idea of how to share (or “roll-out”) these projects with members of your community. The TYLA Tuesday posts will feature TYLA projects, old and new.  If you would like more details, please visit the TYLA website!

In a recent ENews article, Director Laura Docker shared the following about the Educating Educators project:

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

~Nelson Mandela

One of TYLA’s first projects for the 2014-2015 Bar Year  was a project designed to educate the public on law-related issues.  The Law Focused Education Committee is especially proud of Educating Educators, which is available in print and on the TYLA websiteEducating Educators is a resource guide designed to educate teachers and administrators about their rights, responsibilities and legal obligations.  The field of education is fraught with expectations, obligations, responsibilities and regulations.  These rights and responsibilities are found in a myriad of federal and state statutes, administrative regulations, court cases, attorney general decisions, and local policies.  School law is a field that even an experienced attorney can find daunting without guidance, and it can be especially difficult for non-lawyers, such as teachers and parents, to understand the application of these laws to life in the classroom.  Educating Educators will help teachers, educators, and parents have a better understanding of these issues.

Educating Educators will help educators understand and cultivate proper legal relationships with students, parents, and administrators.  These include issues related to physical contact with students, relationships with students on social media websites, and dealing with disruptive or divorced parents.  Educating Educators also offers guidance to teachers having problems with their principal or administrator, as well as an explanation of teaching employment contracts and their rights to due process prior to termination.

Educating Educators addresses a variety of other common legal concerns for teachers.  These include issues regarding student privacy and prayer in schools.  The guide provides information on the reporting obligations for child abuse and neglect and information regarding human trafficking.  It also includes guidance on dealing with CPS and law enforcement in schools.

If you are interested in obtaining more information about this project, including having this project presented to a group of teachers or obtaining copies of the packet, please contact Michelle Palacios.

Baili is an associate with West, Webb, Allbritton & Gentry, PC, where she practices general civil litigation with a focus on family law and employment law. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Texas A&M University, and her J.D. from Baylor Law School. Baili currently serves as Vice President and District 2 Director for the Texas Young Lawyers Association. She is also Vice President of Administration of the Brazos Valley Young Lawyers Association, and a member of the Junior League of Bryan-College Station. Baili lives in College Station, Texas with her husband, Casey, their two children, and two dogs.

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