Education Law/Civil Rights

We recognize unequivocally that public education plays a vital role in our free society. It can be a major factor in an individual’s chances for economic and social success as well as a unique influence on a child’s development as a good citizen and on his future participation in political and community life.

Lujan v. Colorado State Bd. of Educ. (1982)

Today, education is perhaps the most important function of state and local governments. Compulsory school attendance laws and the great expenditures for education both demonstrate our recognition of the importance of education to our democratic society. It is required in the performance of our most basic public responsibilities, even service in the armed forces. It is the very foundation of good citizenship. Today it is a principal instrument in awakening the child to cultural values, in preparing him [or her] for later professional training, and in helping him [or her] to adjust normally to his [or her] environment. In these days, it is doubtful that any child may reasonably be expected to succeed in life if he [or she] is denied the opportunity of an education. Such an opportunity, where the state has undertaken to provide it, is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms.

Brown v. Bd of Educ. of Topeka (1954)

Our Experience

Educational equity and quality are fundamental to our communities and all of our school-aged children. Thus, Education Law Group founder Valerie Simons has represented students and their parents in a variety of contexts that help promote and ensure such educational equity and quality, including:

  • Harassment/Bullying | Advocating for students who have been harassed or bullied by their peers and/or school personnel on the basis of race, sex, sexual orientation or disability in violation of federal civil rights laws and securing private remedies, policy changes, student and staff trainings, and federal government review and monitoring.
  • Special Education | Representing children with disabilities pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (IDEA) and Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) and advocating for proper services at every stage, including initial evaluations, Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings, IEP or 504 plan development and implementation, manifestation hearings for discipline matters and filing for Due Process.
  • Discipline | Securing due process for public school students accused of violating a school district’s code of conduct, including advocating for informal resolutions (dismissals or deferrals if appropriate) and representation at suspension and/or expulsion proceedings and hearings.
  • Truancy | Representing the best interests of students as a guardian ad litem in juvenile court proceedings pursuant to the state’s compulsory attendance law and Valid Court Orders (VCO).

If you have an educational law matter, please contact us as soon as possible as state and/or federal law deadlines may apply.

Useful education law Web sites include:
US Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Education Section
US Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights
US Department of Education (IDEA information)
Colorado Department of Education
Wrights Law (Special Education, Education Law, Children with Disabilities)
COPAA – Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (Special Education Law)