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10 Member Recognition Points Logo2023 WASB/WSAA School Law Conference

Thursday, February 23
Kalahari Resorts & Conventions, Wisconsin Dells

Conference Summary

The 2023 WASB/WSAA School Law Conference, which took place Feb. 23 in Wisconsin Dells, once again featured experienced school law attorneys presenting sessions on a variety of legal and related issues pertinent to school board members and school administrators.

Interested in purchasing the 2023 WSAA/WASB School Law presentations as a bundle? Visit the WASB Online Store.

​Session Descriptions and Handouts

Strategies for Dealing with Wicked Problems 
With public access to real-time information; the spread and magnification of inaccurate facts and narratives; the evaporation of voices of moderation; and the increasing use of judicial intervention to attempt to resolve policy disputes (among many other factors), elected officials and professional government leaders must be vigilant and prepared with tools and strategies to prevent and address wicked problems in an increasingly wicked world.
• Dean Dietrich (Weld Riley) and Eric Giordano (Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service)

Non-renewal of Teacher Contracts (Session Presentation)
This presentation reviewed the basics of teacher non-renewal, including statutory 118.22 requirements, due process constitutional protections, employment discrimination laws, individual contracts, employee handbooks and policies, public records and open meeting law considerations and more.
• Scott Mikesh (WASB)

Public Records and the Social Media World (Session Presentation)
This presentation discussed the impacts of social media under the Wisconsin Public Records Law. The presenters will discuss the language of the Public Records Law and the obligations of local government entities to maintain records posted through social media as part of the public records of the local government unit.
• Sven Strutz (Weld Riley) and Tony Steffek (Amundsen Davis)

Rules of Order for School Board Meetings: Productive Parliamentary Procedure (Session Presentation)
School board meetings are more effective when the board’s attention is focused on the substance of their decisions rather than on the procedures that are used to navigate the agenda and reach those decisions. Attendees improved their understanding of typical meeting procedures and those situations where state law establishes mandatory procedures, to gain clarity on some common sources of confusion, and to obtain ideas for using board policy to document a core set of local rules of order that can serve as an efficient and readily-available framework for conducting the board’s business.
• Dan Mallin (WASB)

Buy, Sell, Build: Referendums and Real Estate Transactions (Session Presentation)
From the real estate transaction perspective, this presentation focused on the key issues for a district to consider when buying or selling real estate. From the referendum lens, this presentation will include an overview of the referendum process, as well as tips and tricks to ensure the referendum process runs smoothly for your district.
• Jenna Rousseau (Renning, Lewis & Lacy) and Sarah Hanneman (Attolles Law)

An Overview of the Open Meetings Law (Session Presentation)
This session covered a broad overview of the open meetings law requirements and cover more specific issues such as calling special meetings, virtual participation and voting, use of technology and social media, and the slippery slope of walking quorums.
• Ben Richter (WASB)

Preparing for Your Annual Meeting (Session Presentation)
This session covered the requirements for an annual meeting, shared important reminders as you plan for and conduct the meeting, and prepared attendees for some common “traps” that might come up.
• Doug Witte (Boardman Clark)

Pardon My Speech: Whose Right Is It Anyways? (Session Presentation)
This session provided an overview of the most recent case law involving First Amendment rights in the school environment, including apparel and dress code issues, flags and posters, recent developments surrounding school prayer, and the free speech rights of individual School Board members.
• Saveon Grenell, Sheila Thobani and Emily Turzinski (Buelow Vetter)

Administrative Leave for Employees – What Are the Ramifications and Considerations? (Session Handout)
What is administrative leave and when should the employer consider it? This panel session discussed what administrative leave is, when it could be considered, and  the potential ramifications of placing someone on administrative leave.
• Malina Piontek (Piontek Law LLC), Bob Butler (WASB) and Joe Donovan (Donovan Group)

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