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Spring 2024 Clinic

Education Law Clinic: Strategic Litigation

Required Class Component: Impact Litigation in Education Clinical Seminar (2 spring credits). This clinic and course are bundled; your enrollment in the clinic will automatically enroll you in this required course.

Additional Co-/Pre-Requisites: None.
By Permission: Yes. Please contact Prof. Gregory for more information.
Add/Drop Deadline: December 2, 2023.
Placement Site: HLS.

Students in this clinic will engage in preparing the groundwork for possible state constitutional litigation designed to fully define and enforce the right to a meaningful public education. More specifically, we aim to pursue a vision for the constitutional right to an education that clearly outlines the educational outcomes and resource inputs necessary to provide all students with the skills and capacities they need to participate meaningfully in democratic society and in the world of work. In collaboration with the Center for Educational Equity at Columbia University, the Clinic has outlined a national action plan for pursuing such advocacy across the country and has begun deep work in one particular state where we hope to establish the efficacy of our model. In this particular state, clinic students will work closely with our partner organization – a youth voice non-profit founded by secondary school students – to carry out a public engagement campaign designed to elicit factual evidence about the state of public education in local communities, build relationships with key individuals and organizations, increase public awareness, and identify potential plaintiffs. This campaign will include a series of regional public forums across the state throughout the winter and spring that clinic students will help to plan and implement. Students will analyze and synthesize transcripts from these forums and prepare memos that detail key findings. Students will also identify particular forum attendees for follow-up in-depth interviews and will conduct interviews in collaboration with secondary school student partners. All of this factfinding will result in a “state of our schools” report to be authored and released by our partner organization. The findings in the report will also potentially serve as key allegations in a state court complaint, which we may begin drafting before the conclusion of the semester. In addition to the work outlined above in our first state, students may also engage in research and stakeholder outreach to develop potential advocacy activities in other states identified as viable jurisdictions for implementation of our advocacy model. Students in this clinic will also be required to register for a companion seminar that will focus on the historical, jurisprudential, and doctrinal underpinnings of our legal theory.