Education Law Symposium 2021 Round-Up

The 19th annual Education Law Symposium (July 7 – 8), sponsored jointly by Loyola Marymount University School of Education Center for Catholic Education and the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA), found 200-plus online participants engaged in learning with some of the nation’s top experts on Catholic school legal issues. Based on a post-symposium survey, the symposium was very well received with nearly 100 percent of attendees saying it was good to excellent.

Session topics included:

  • Pandemic and post-pandemic realities for educators
  • Medical issues as students and staff return to in-person learning
  • Friend and fundraising in these times
  • Technology and legal realities
  • How to create an inclusive environment
  • Custody issues
  • Handbooks
  • School safety
  • Issues from the field
  • What beginning teachers need to know

Sister Dale McDonald, PBVM, Ph.D., NCEA Director of Public Policy and Educational Research, presented her always popular policy and legislative update, including information on current Supreme Court rulings as related to Catholic schools, COVID-19 funding availability and guidelines, Title funding, and much more.

A live panel of attorneys enabled participants to ask questions directly of practicing attorneys.

Current issues of interest were: returning to normal in a new normal, whether to require vaccinations of employees and students, documentation of vaccinations, sanitation requirements, handbook updates, emerging issues with child custody and how to meet the needs of students with learning differences. Issues of finance and tuition collection emerge even more strongly in the light of so many lost jobs and poverty spurred on by the pandemic. 

I was struck by the desire of Catholic administrators and teachers to remain true to the Gospel mandates, even in light of such trying times. We are certainly striving to “Teach as Jesus Did.”

It is not too late to sign up to experience the 2021 Education Law Symposium virtually for only $69. Full access to the sessions and prayers is available through August 8.

Mark your calendars for next year’s grand Twentieth Annual Education Law Symposium, offered in person at the famous Brown Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. Opportunities for learning, dialogue, continuing education credits and the companionship we have so missed will abound.

Dates are July 7 – 10, 2022. Expect all your favorite experts and new ones as well for a grand celebration. Anyone interested in presenting, please contact me at mshaugh1@lmu.edu. Blessings on your new school year.


About the Author

Sister Angie Shaughnessy, SCN, JD, Ph.D., is a Sister of Charity of Nazareth. She is a nationally recognized expert on the law as it affects Catholic schools and Church ministry. She serves as a consultant to numerous dioceses and is a highly sought-after national speaker and the author of more than 30 texts. You can read her regular From the Field feature, Legal Issues, in Momentum.