Clinics

Education Advocacy Clinic

LW.12400 / LW.12401
Professor Randi Levine
Professor Matthew Lenaghan
Open to 2L and 3L students
Maximum of 8 students
Spring semester
5 credits*
No prerequisites

Introduction

The Education Advocacy Clinic is a 5-credit, semester-long clinic that represents public school students in education cases.

Course Description

Fieldwork

Students from low-income backgrounds often face barriers to receiving a high-quality education in New York City public schools.  There are laws to protect the educational rights of certain populations of students, including students with disabilities, English Language Learners, and students experiencing homelessness, but many of these children do not receive the services and supports they need to succeed in school.  In addition, students with disabilities and students of color are disproportionately suspended from school.  Students facing suspension have the right to bring a lawyer to their suspension hearings, but the vast majority of students are unable to find representation.

Clinic students work on education cases with a focus on special education cases and school discipline cases.  In these cases, law students work closely with families from low-income backgrounds to help their public school students get supports and services to address their educational and behavioral needs.  Students will participate in various stages of the representation process including intake, investigation, settlement negotiations, advocacy at school-based meetings, and possible participation in mediation or hearings.  Clinic students will also work on education policy initiatives focused on the needs of students most at risk of academic failure. Fieldwork will likely be done in partnership with Advocates for Children of New York at Advocates for Children of New York.

Seminar

The seminar focuses on New York City’s education system, including the laws and procedures governing special education and school discipline.  The seminar also addresses the cases students are handling; trial skills; issues relating to race, class, and disability in education; and efforts to create systemic change for public school students.

Application Procedure

Students should submit an application, resume and transcript on-line via CAMS.  Some applicants may be contacted during the clinic application period for an interview. For questions regarding the application process, please contact Yvette Bisono at (212) 998-6177 or via email. If you have questions about the clinic itself, you can direct them to Randi Levine.

Student Contacts

Students who are interested in learning more about the clinic may wish to speak with the following students who are participating in Education Advocacy Clinic during the spring of 2017:

Erin Bishop
Naadia Chowdhury
Jennifer De Jesus
Asna Erfan
Nate Gibson
Erin Shea
Lindsey Smith


* 5 credits include 3 clinical credits and 2 academic seminar credits.