Amicus Briefs from NSBA

NSBA files more amicus briefs to the Supreme Court each year than all education associations combined. Our most recent state and federal court briefs are available below. See the School Law Issues area for topically archived briefs.

Looking for more information? See what’s Inside Amicus Briefs from NSBA on the right.

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Boone Cnty. Bd of Educ. v. N.W. (6th Cir.)
Special Education: IDEA - whether parents' are entitled to tuition reimbursement under IDEA for unilateral placement of student in private school because that placement was the "proper" stay put placement. Filed January 28, 2014.

Tustin Unified School District v. K.M. (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Petition Brief)
Special Education: IDEA - section 504 - Title II of ADA - does IDEA trump ADA's "effective communication" regulation when making decisions regarding the education of disabled students. Filed January 27, 2014.

Easton Area School District v. B.H. (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Petition Brief)
Student Rights: First Amendment - Did school district violate students' free speech rights banning the wearing of cancer awareness bracelets, containing the caption "I [heart] boobies," in school. Filed January 6, 2014.

Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Merits Brief
Equity & Discrimination: Fourteenth Amendment - Whether a state violates the Equal Protection Clause by amending its constitution to prohibit race and sex-based discrimination or preferential treatment in public-university admissions decisions. Filed August 30, 2013.

Commonwealth of Kentucky v. N.C. (U.S. Sup. Ct - Petition Brief)
Student Rights: Fifth Amendment - does school administrator's questioning of student in the presence of school resource officer trigger Miranda warnings. Filed August 28, 2013.

Lance v. Lewisville Independent School District (5th Cir.)
Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973: Recovery of damages - intentional discrimination - deliberate indifference standard - exhaustion of administrative remedies requirerment. Filed July 26, 2013.

Hoke County Board of Education v. State of North Carolina (Leandro III) (N.C. Sup. Ct.)
School funding: State's constitutional duty to provide at-risk children with prekindergarten program. Filed July 24, 2013.

Madigan v. Levin (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Merits Brief)
ADEA: Availability of section 1983 for age discrimination claim. Filed June 10, 2013.

Jefferson County School District R-1 v. Elizabeth E. (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Petition Brief)
IDEA: Medical care - unilateral placement of student receiving special education services in mental health facility - reimbursement when placement is primarily for education purposes. Filed April 25, 2013.

Louisiana Federation of Teachers v. State of Louisiana (La. Sup. Ct.)
School voucher program: Louisiana private school voucher program part of national effort to divert public dollars from public education - without imposing accountability to harm of taxpayers. Filed March 18, 2013

C.L. v. Scarsdale Union Free Sch. Dist. (2d Cir.)
IDEA: Whether courts must consider IDEA's least restrictive environment requirement when determining if a parent's unilateral placement of their child in private school is appropriate for purposes of granting tuition reimbursement under IDEA. Filed March 15, 2013

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Merits Brief)
Title VII: Whether the application of the mixed-motive standard in Title VII retaliation cases would unduly burden public schools. Filed March 11, 2013

Long v. Murray Cnty. Sch. Dist. (11th Cir.)
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973/Americans with Disabilities Act: Whether summary judgment was properly granted on the claim of disability discrimination under Section 504 and the ADA based on the district court‘s finding that the school district was not deliberately indifferent as a matter of law to the alleged peer harassment. Filed November 28, 2012

Niehaus v. Huppenthal (Ariz. App. Ct., Div. One)
Establishment Clause - prohibition on public funding of religious institutions: Whether Arizona's tuition-tax credit program violates the state costitutional provisions mandating separation of church and state and prohibiting the use of public funds to aid religious institutions, such as schools. Filed October 31, 2012

Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Merits Brief)
Fourteenth Amendment - Equal Protection Clause: Whether the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions interpreting the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, including Grutter v. Bollinger, 539 U.S. 306, 71 U.S.L.W. 1788 (2003), permit the University of Texas at Austin's use of race in undergraduate admissions decisions. Filed August 13, 2012

D.L. v. Baltimore Cnty. Bd. Sch. Commissioners (4th Cir.)
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973: Whether disabled student enrolled in private school is entitled to services under Section 504 on the same basis as a disabled student enrolled in public school. Filed April 9, 2012

Doe v. Covington Cnty. Sch. Dist. (5th Cir.)
Fourteenth Amendment: Due Process - special relationship theory of liability for acts of third parties - state created danger exception based on school district's ID check policy for visitors. Filed December 30, 2011

Peninsula Sch. Dist. v. D.P. (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Petition Brief)
IDEA: exhaustion of administrative remedies requirement - seeking to avoid requirement by artful pleading based on remedy sought. Filed November 23, 2011

Filarsky v. Delia (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Merits Brief)
Qualified immunity: Is a lawyer retained to work with government employees in conducting an internal affairs investigation precluded from asserting qualified immunity solely because of his status as a "private" lawyer rather than a government employee . Filed November 22, 2011

Hispanic Interest Coalition of Alabama v. Bentley (11th Cir.)
Fourteenth Amendment: school-related provisions in Alabama's immigration law violate Equal Protection Clause guarantees established in U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Plyler v. Doe. Filed November 22, 2011

Blue Mountain Sch. Dist. v. J.S./Hermitage Sch. Dist. v. Layshock (U.S. Sup. Ct. - Petition Brief)
First Amendment: Student speech - does Tinker and/or Fraser apply to offcampus, online student speech - school officials authority to regulate, restrict such speech without offending student's free speech rights. Filed November 2, 2011

R.K. v. Board of Education of Scott County, Kentucky (6th Cir)
ADA/Section 504: Right of student receiving disability-related services to attend neighborhood school - financial burden on school district. Filed October 14, 2011

Jefferson County School District R-1 v. Elizabeth E. (10th Cir.)
IDEA: Medical care - unilateral placement of student receiving special education services in mental health facility - reimbursement when placement is primarily for education purposes. Filed September 26, 2011

Morgan v. Swanson (5th Cir.)
First Amendment: Establishment Clause and Free Speech Clause—qualified immunity for school officials making decisions that require reconciling free speech and government endorsement of religion concerns. Filed March 16, 2011.

Camreta v. Greene and Alford v. Greene (U.S. Sup. Ct.)
Fourth Amendment—Probable cause standard: application to interview by child protective services worker and/or law enforcement officer of suspected child abuse victim at school. Filed December 17, 2010.

Borough of Duryea v. Guarnieri (U.S. Sup. Ct.)
First Amendment: Petition Clause—application of “public concern” analysis to employee grievances. Filed December 13, 2010.

Payne v. Peninsula School District (9th Cir.)
IDEA: Exhaustion of administrative remedies—implementation of behavioral modification interventions. Filed October 13, 2010

Arizona Christian School Tuition Organization v. Winn & Garriott v. Winn (U.S. Sup. Ct.)
First Amendment: Establishment Clause—constitutionality of Arizona tuition tax credit program. Filed 9/22/10.

Dydell v. Taylor (Mo. Sup. Ct.)
Coverdell Teacher Protection Act: applicability to school administrators for acts and omissions in disciplining students; interaction with state official immunity laws. Filed 9/1/10.

Staub v. Proctor Hospital (U.S. Sup. Ct.)
USERRA: Vicarious liability of employer for discriminatory animus of subordinate without decision-making authority; available defenses to “cat’s paw” claims. Filed 9/7/10.

Johnson v. Poway Unified School District (9th Cir.)
First Amendment: Employee free speech—authority of school district to regulate teacher classroom expression. Filed July 23, 2010.

Purdham v. Fairfax County School Board (4th Cir.)
Fair Labor Standards Act: Interpretation of nominal fee—Payment of stipends to school support staff who volunteer as coaches/advisors for athletic and extracurricular activities. Filed June 17, 2010.

C.H. v. Heyward (4th Cir.)
First Amendment: Student free speech—Authority of school district to regulate wearing of apparel displaying Confederate flag. Filed June 1, 2010.

Christian Legal Society v. Martinez (U.S. Sup. Ct.)
First Amendment: ability of public school to condition official recognition status on student group’s adoption of school’s non-discrimination policy. Filed March 15, 2010.

Meadows v. Lake Travis Independent Sch. Dist. (5th Cir.)
Parental rights: Access to school premises to monitor child’s education; reasonableness of visitor policies to ensure student safety. Filed February 25, 2010.

City of Ontario v. Quon (U.S. Sup. Ct.) - Merits Brief
Fourth Amendment: Right to search employee’s messages transmitted via public employer’s electronic communication devices. Filed February 12, 2010.

NSBA Amicus Cases Win/Loss Chart - Current Term
Scorecard of NSBA amicus efforts in federal and state appellate courts

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