Recent Decisions- SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

Article excerpt

Review Denied

Education Law Cases Carried over from the Court's 2005-2006 Appellate Docket

Docket No.: 05-908

Name: Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School

District No. 1

Decision below: 426 F.3d 1162 (9th Cir. 2005)

Cert. Granted: June 5th, 2006

Docket No.: 05-915

Name: Meredith v. Jefferson County Board of Education

Decision below: 416 F.3d 513 (6th Cir. 2005)

Cert. Granted: June 5th, 2006

Docket No.: 05-983

Name: Winkelman v. Parma City School District

Decision below: Unpublished opinion (6th Cir. 2005)

Cert. Filed: Feb. 2nd, 2006

Docket No.: 05-1508

Name: Zuni Public School District No. 89 v. Dep't of Education

Decision below: 437 F.3d 1289 (10th Cir. 2006)

Cert. Filed: May 24th, 2006

DOCKET NO.: 05-1529

NAME: Thurman v. Board of Supervisors of Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College

Decision below: Unpublished opinion (La. Ct. App. 2005)

Cert. Filed: May 30th, 2006

DOCKET NO.: 05-1539

NAME: Eklund v. Byron Union School District

Decision below: Unpublished opinion (9th Cir. 2005)

Cert. Filed: May 31st 2006

Final Decision

DOCKET NO.: 05-18

NAME: Arlington Central School District Board of Education v. Murphy

DATE: June 26th, 2006

Parents of a disabled child prevailed in a suit filed under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and sought to recover the costs of expert witnesses under the IDEA fee shifting provision. IDEA allows for the awarding of reasonable attorneys' fees as part of the costs to parents who prevail in an action brought under the Act. The district court granted the parents a portion of the fees that they requested and the court of appeals upheld this decision. Held: The Supreme Court reversed the decision of the lower courts. The Supreme Court held that in order for a state to be bound by an obligation under the IDEA the law must furnish clear notice to the state that they are bound by such an obligation. Here the court looked to the language of the IDEA (sec. 1415) which states that "in any action or proceeding brought under this section, the court, in its discretion, may award reasonable attorneys' fees as part of the costs to the parents of a child with a disability who is the prevailing party." The court found that nowhere in the above quoted language does it even hint at the responsibility of a state to reimburse parents for the services rendered by an expert. Arlington Central School District Board of Education v. Murphy, 126 S. Ct. 2455 (2006)

Review Denied

Decisions with published opinions in the lower court:

DOCKET NO.: 05-899

NAME: Baldwinsville Central School District v. Peck

DATE: Apr. 24, 2006

CITATION: 126 S. Ct. 1880 (2006)

Parents of an elementary school student sued the school district claiming that the school violated the Establishment Clause and their child's First Amendment rights when they censored one of his assignments. …