NDSBA General Counsel may be retained to assist member school districts on a fee-for-services basis. There is a demand for direct, customized legal services for public school districts that is not being fully met by our Legal Affiliates despite their best efforts. In addition, school districts are hesitant to retain private counsel even when recommended to do so due to the cost associated with private legal services. For these reasons, our members benefit greatly by having an option for discounted legal services available to them. NDSBA is in a unique position to provide this service to our members at below-market rates through our fee-based program, NDSBA Legal Direct. NDSBA Legal Direct is meant to supplement, not supplant the services provided to our members by our Legal Affiliates.
The following fee-based legal services may be provided through NDSBA Legal Direct:
• General legal counsel and advice: NDSBA General Counsel may provide direct legal advice and counseling to our member districts on the day-to-day legal issues and situations that arise in school operations.
• Contract review: NDSBA General Counsel may be retained to draft, review and/or modify contracts member districts enter with vendors or other third-party service providers.
• Negotiated Agreement review: NDSBA General Counsel may be retained to review district Negotiated Agreements. At a member district’s request, staff will provide a written analysis of the Negotiated Agreement.
• Customized policy drafting: NDSBA General Counsel may assist member districts in customizing school board policies and related regulations to tailor them to districts’ needs.
• Non-renewal hearings: NDSBA General Counsel may counsel and assist member districts through the nonrenewal process (performance and RIF), including representation at due process hearings.
• Customized training: NDSBA General Counsel is able to provide training and professional development to school boards and/or their staff through specially designed seminars and in-service training in areas such as student rights and discipline, personnel issues, anti-bullying programs, special education, weapons and threat assessment, discrimination and harassment prevention, complaint handling, equal opportunity, ADA, FMLA, FLSA, FERPA and student records, open records and meetings, staff evaluations, and similar law-related topics.
At this time, NDSBA Legal Direct expressly excludes the following services: litigation matters; discharge for cause hearings; matters that may be covered by insurance (NDIRF) or assigned to insurance counsel; matters where another member school district is adverse to the district requesting assistance; and matters where the member district is already represented by legal counsel on the matter.
Services are provided in exchange for a below-market hourly rate or on a flat-fee basis. Please contact NDSBA for more information regarding NDSBA Legal Direct.