Oct 31st, 2022

In Case You Missed It: New Health and Safety-Related Legal Requirements; and Surveys to Confirm Compliance with Holocaust Instruction Requirements

An amendment to Section 4402 of the Education Law, which is now in effect, requires school districts to develop a procedure to notify a parent/guardian of a student with a disability on the same day a physical or mechanical restraint is applied on the student or such student is placed in a time out room. If the student’s parent/guardian cannot be contacted after reasonable attempts are made, the principal must make a record of the incident and efforts to contact parents, and make a report to the CSE.

Pursuant to recent amendments to Sections 3001-b and 3001-c of the Education Law, which are now in effect, a teacher or person who is unable to hold a valid first aid/CPR certificate due to a physical disability to coach any extra-class athletic activity must be allowed to occupy such a position if there is another teacher or person employed by the school system who holds a valid certificate of completion and is present at all times during the extra-class athletic activity including but not limited to practices, scrimmages, and during competitions. Previously, individuals whose physical disabilities prevented them from performing CPR were not able to act as a head coach of a school athletic team.

•An amendment to Section 1370-d of the Public Health Law, which is now in effect, requires that within three months of enrollment of a pre-kindergarten/kindergarten child under the age of 6, school districts must obtain from a parent/guardian evidence that the child has been screened for lead. If no evidence of lead screening is available, the pre-kindergarten or kindergarten shall provide the parent/guardian of the child with information on lead poisoning in children and lead poisoning prevention and refer the parent/guardian to a primary care provider or the local health authority. This section previously applied only to childcare providers, public or private nursery schools, and pre-schools.

An amendment to Section 924 of the Education Law, which takes effect July 1, 2023, and will apply for the 2023-2024 school year, requires that contracts with private food service management companies to provide, maintain and operate a cafeteria, must include a requirement that the private company disclose ingredients lists and nutritional information to school districts for all meals that such company provides. All ingredient lists and nutritional information provided to school districts must be published and publicly shared on the school district’s website.

A recent change in the law, which is now in effect, authorizes the Commissioner of Education to conduct a survey to determine whether school districts are offering instruction on the Holocaust in compliance with section 801 of the education law. The survey will include questions on how the district is meeting the learning standards for instruction requirements on the Holocaust pursuant to section eight hundred one of the education law and will also include an attestation from each public school district superintendent that indicates instruction related to the Holocaust is provided at all appropriate grade levels. Non-compliant schools will be subject to a corrective action plan.

If you have questions about any of these issues, please contact us.


Charles E. Symons

Charles E. Symons assists clients with matters involving labor and employment law, education law, constitutional law, and related civil litigation and administrative proceedings...

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