1. Drafting Legally-Defensible Disability Accommodations

Drafting Legally-Defensible Disability Accommodations

Drafting Legally-Defensible Disability Accommodations
Event ID: 69715
Session ID: 15960

Duration: 90 minutes including question and answer session.
Presenter(s): Erin D. Gilsbach, Esq., attorney at law, Steckel and Stopp
Price: $299.00 On-Demand includes full audio presentation, question and answer session, and presentation slides.
CE Credits: This program has been approved for 1.5 general recertification credit hours toward PHR, SPHR, and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. This program is valid for 1.5 PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.
Who Should Attend? K-12 administrators, district legal counsel, principals, counselors, special education, teachers, staff
Best For: K-12

Courts are starting to look critically at specific accommodations in IEPs and Section 504 plans, and the results are not encouraging. In this ultra-practical session, we urge teachers, special educators, guidance counselors, and administrators to take a hard look at the accommodations included in the Section 504 plans and IEPs that are being drafted in their schools. From ambiguous language to “default” and “standard” accommodations to downright nonsensical language, legal defensibility issues are all too common in IEPs and Section 504 plans.

Please join nationally acclaimed attorney Erin Gilsbach as she discusses many examples of common, legally-problematic language and provides helpful tips and tools that schools can use to audit their documents for issues, recognize liability-prone language, make meaningful changes to existing language, and prevent future problems. Through a review of common, real-life accommodations and recent case law, she provides an essential, critical appraisal of common drafting problems. She also offers simple, meaningful solutions that can make a huge difference in legal defensibility and can be implemented immediately.


Just a sampling of what this webinar will cover:

  • The importance of legally-defensible drafting of disability accommodations
  • A legal primer of the laws mandating disability accommodations, including the IDEA and Section 504
  • An analysis of case law involving accommodation drafting issues
  • Identification of common drafting errors
  • Practical and simple self-audit tools that can be used by all faculty and administration to spot potential issues
  • Best-practice tips for avoiding common errors and writing legally-defensible accommodations


Your conference leader for “Drafting Legally-Defensible Disability Accommodations” is Erin Gilsbach. Ms. Gilsbach is a practicing school law attorney with the PA-based law firm of Steckel and Stopp. She is an experienced speaker at the state and national levels on matters regarding school law and a frequent author on education law topics. She currently serves as the president of the Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) Solicitor’s Association and is a member of the board of directors of the National School Boards Association (NSBA) Council of School Attorneys (COSA). Ms. Gilsbach provides a wide variety of training programs, as well as legal consulting services, to school districts, charter schools, non-public schools, and education-related organizations. She specializes in school policy and procedure legal defensibility audits as well as professional development in areas of special education, school technology, nursing and school health services, truancy prevention, child abuse prevention and mandated reporting, educator evaluation and discipline, and many other trending school law topics. Prior to attending law school, she taught high school English. Prior to entering private practice, she served for over two years at the PA Dept. of Education’s Office of Chief Counsel. Ms. Gilsbach was voted by her peers as a SuperLawyers “Rising Star Attorney” for 5 consecutive years and is an active member of and frequent presenter and author for NSBA, COSA, the national Education Law Association (ELA), PSBA, the LRP Institute, the National Business Institute (NBI), the Pennsylvania Bar Institute (PBI), and a number of other legal and educational organizations. She is currently writing a book for LRP publications on school health services that is scheduled for publication in the fall of 2019.

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