School Update: Vaccines and Masks

To Our School Board Community: As we anticipate the return to full in person instruction for our students, we are again seeing increased Executive Orders, and last minute guidance. On August 20, 2021 the New Jersey Department of Education updated the “Road Forward” guidance and on August 23, 2021, Governor Murphy announced Executive Order 253 […]

New Jersey Federal Trial Courts Rule in Favor of Insurers for Covid-19 Claims

In a trilogy of recent Federal Court trial decisions, three separate cases upheld the insurer’s “virus exclusion”  barring coverage for losses “caused directly or indirectly by the presence, growth, proliferation, spread…of any virus.”  While the Third Circuit has not reached a decision on these issues, Federal Trial Courts adjudicating summary judgment motions in favor of […]

Ohio Federal Court Deals a COVID-19 Blow to Zurich Insurance Company

On January 19, 2021, the federal court in the State of Ohio was called upon to interpret a business insurance policy where the plaintiff restaurant chain sought “business interruption income losses” under their general liability insurance policy with Zurich Insurance Co. due to the COVID pandemic. The name of the decision is Henderson Rd. Rest. […]

Amy Houck Elco authors article in School Leader Magazine

Cooper Levenson Partner Amy Houck Elco recently authored an article for the official publication of the New Jersey School Boards Association, School Leader Magazine. Her article, entitled “Navigating Special Education Rights During COVID-19” discusses the distinct challenges that the pandemic school closures present for special education students. The article appeared in the publication’s Nov/Dec 2020 […]

Governor Clarifies in Executive Order No. 196 that BOE Meetings are Legislative Proceedings NOT Subject to Restrictions on Gatherings

To Our School Board Community: The Governor issued Executive Order 196 on November 16, 2020. The Executive Order tightened up restrictions on indoor and outdoor gatherings. However, notably, after much debate in the legal community, Executive Order 196 clarifies that Local Boards of Education meetings are local legislative proceedings, and are not subject to the capacity […]

New DCA issued OPMA Regulations to Consider Before Your Next Meeting

To Our School Board Community: We have been trying to anticipate and quickly respond to your questions during this time, given the unprecedented challenges presented to our Boards related to COVID-19 school closures. In March, the New Jersey Legislature amended the Open Public Meetings Act (“OPMA”), to include various relaxations as a result of COVID-19. […]

Executive Order No. 187 Guidance

To Our School Board Community: On October 12, 2020, the Governor of New Jersey issued Executive Order No. 187, which allows indoor practices and competitions to resume. Specifically, EO 187 applies to “no-contact practices, contact practices, and competitions for sports defined as low risk, medium risk, and high risk.” A list of permissible activities is […]

COVID-19 Halloween Guidance

To Our School Board Community: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we expect that Halloween will look quite different this year. In anticipation of the upcoming holiday, New Jersey has issued Halloween Celebration Guidance with recommendations on how to safely celebrate. Notable recommendations include: OUTDOOR TRICK-OR-TREATING: If you plan to trick-or-treat, you should limit your group […]

School COVID-19 Dashboard

To Our School Board Community: We have been trying to anticipate and quickly respond to your questions during this time, given the unprecedented challenges presented to our Boards related to COVID-19. We wanted to bring to your attention a new data set on the New Jersey State Website COVID-19 Dashboard. The State is now reporting […]

First Look at Executive Order No. 175

To Our School Board Community: Today, the Governor issued Executive Order No. 175 which addresses, among other things, reopening plans and reopening requirements, requirements for all-remote learning, and periodic updates to the Department of Education. We are working to unpack this lengthy Executive Order so we can provide you with the most up-to-date and accurate […]