Leander A. Dolphin is a partner in the firm’s School Law practice group and serves as Co-Chair of the firm’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion. She represents public school districts, independent schools, and colleges and universities in education and employment matters, including student discipline, sexual harassment (Title IX) matters, disability-related matters, employee discipline and discharge, special education disputes, and investigations. In addition, she represents clients in claims before state and federal courts and administrative agencies. Leander also represents private and non-profit clients in employment litigation matters, and provides counseling in employment law to clients in both the private and public sectors.
Leander previously served as Vice President, HR & General Counsel at Girl Scouts of Connecticut, developing an HR infrastructure and assisting the organization in navigating various corporate, real estate, contractual, and employment issues to successful results. Leander has conducted numerous professional development workshops for private and public sector clients on topics such as sexual harassment, bullying, special education, disability discrimination, and confidentiality issues.
Successfully represented multiple school districts in claims before the Office of Civil Rights, alleging violation of the IDEA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as well as claims alleging violation of Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 (sex discrimination), Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (race discrimination) and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") (disability discrimination). Negotiated numerous resolution agreements, avoiding letters of findings by OCR or corrective action.
Successfully represented a Connecticut Board of Education in defense of a claim brought under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ("IDEA"). The Parent sued our client, claiming that the Board was required to fund an extended day program at a private placement. The Board of Education prevailed at hearing, with the hearing officer finding that the District had provided a free appropriate public education for the student, and the student did not require placement in an extended day program at public expense.
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