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When you’re facing a federal issue, you need an attorney whose going to be available 24/7 to help you get the results and outcome you need. The value of working with the Spodek Law Group is that we treat each and every client like a member of our family.

New York Non-Tenured Teachers Defense

Defending Your Rights as a Non-Tenured Teacher in New York

Your Rights Under the Law

As a non-tenured teacher, you can’t be fired for an unlawful reason. That includes discrimination based on race, gender, age, disability, or other protected characteristics. Your dismissal also can’t violate your contract with the district. Now, your school may try to claim they fired you for “performance issues” or “misconduct.” But if that’s just an excuse to cover up unlawful motives, we can fight it. Our skilled employment attorneys know how to dig into the facts and expose the real reasons.

Hostile Work Environment? You Don’t Have to Take It

Here’s another situation we often see: non-tenured teachers being subjected to a hostile work environment. Maybe you’re dealing with harassment from administrators or colleagues. Or facing excessive scrutiny, unrealistic demands, and unfair criticism – all designed to push you out. Look, that’s unacceptable. And it’s illegal. At Spodek Law Group, we take hostile workplace claims seriously. We’ll thoroughly investigate, gather evidence, and take decisive legal action to make it stop.

Defending Your Reputation and Career

For teachers, a dismissal isn’t just about losing one job – it can derail your entire career. Allegations of misconduct or incompetence can follow you, making it extremely difficult to get hired elsewhere. That’s why, when defending non-tenured teachers, we fight aggressively to clear your name. Our goal? Getting charges dismissed or reduced, so you can move forward with a clean professional record.

The Spodek Law Group Advantage

Here’s the thing: school districts have huge legal teams on their side. As a non-tenured teacher, you need attorneys who can go toe-to-toe with them. Attorneys who understand education law inside and out. That’s us. The Spodek Law Group has decades of experience defending teachers’ rights across New York. We know the laws, the procedures, and most importantly – we know how to win.

Don’t Just Take Our Word for It

Still not convinced? Fair enough. Here are just a few examples of non-tenured teachers we’ve successfully defended:

  • A middle school science teacher accused of verbal abuse and incompetence. We got the charges dismissed after proving they were baseless and discriminatory.
  • An elementary teacher let go shortly after requesting maternity leave accommodations. Our lawsuit alleged unlawful pregnancy discrimination – and secured a substantial settlement.
  • A high school English teacher terminated for “excessive absences.” We demonstrated the absences were legally protected under FMLA, forcing reinstatement and back pay.

Look, when your career and reputation are on the line, you need a powerhouse on your side. At Spodek Law Group, we leave no stone unturned in building a strategic, aggressive defense.

The Right Approach for Your Unique Situation

But we don’t just take a one-size-fits-all approach, either. Every case is different – so we tailor our strategy to your unique circumstances. Sometimes, that means negotiating a favorable separation agreement if leaving is inevitable. Other times, it involves filing discrimination or retaliation claims to get you reinstated. And if it comes to hearings or litigation, you can count on our team’s outstanding courtroom skills. We’re not afraid to battle tooth-and-nail to protect your rights.

Christine Twomey
Christine Twomey
Just had my Divorce case settled 2 months ago after having a horrible experience with another firm. I couldn’t be happier with Claire Banks and Elizabeth Garvey with their outstanding professionalism in doing so with Spodek Law Group. Any time I needed questions answered they were always prompt in doing so with all my uncertainties after 30 yrs of marriage.I feel from the bottom of my heart you will NOT be disappointed with either one. Thanks a million.
Brendan huisman
Brendan huisman
Alex Zhik contacted me almost immediately when I reached out to Spodek for a consultation and was able to effectively communicate the path forward/consequences of my legal issue. I immediately agreed to hire Alex for his services and did not regret my choice. He was able to cover my case in court (with 1 day notice) and not only was he able to push my case down, he carefully negotiated a dismissal of the charge altogether. I highly recommend Spodek, and more specifically, Alex Zhik for all of your legal issues. Thanks guys!
Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
Thanks again Spodek law firm, particularly Esq Claire Banks who stood right there with us up to the finish line. Attached photos taken right outside of the court building and the smile on our faces represented victory, a breath of fresh air and satisfaction. We are very happy that this is over and we can move on with our lives. Thanks Spodek law 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙌🏼❤️
Keisha Parris
Keisha Parris
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko Beauty
Taïko Beauty
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence. Thank you team!
Anthony Williams
Anthony Williams
Hey, how you guys doing? Good afternoon my name is Anthony Williams I just want to give a great shout out to the team of. Spodek law group. It is such a honor to use them and to use their assistance through this whole case from start to finish. They did everything that they said they was gonna do and if it ever comes down to it, if I ever have to use them again, hands-down they will be the first law office at the top of my list, thank you guys so much. It was a pleasure having you guys by my side so if you guys ever need them, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.
Loveth Okpedo
Loveth Okpedo
Very professional, very transparent, over all a great experience
Bee L
Bee L
Amazing experience with Spodek! Very professional lawyers who take your case seriously. They treated me with respect, were always available, and answered any and all questions. They were able to help me very successfully and removed a huge stress. Highly recommend.
divesh patel
divesh patel
I can't recommend Alex Zhik and Spodek Law Firm highly enough for their exceptional legal representation and personal mentorship. From the moment I engaged their services in October 2022, Alex took the time to understand my case thoroughly and provided guidance every step of the way. Alex's dedication to my case went above and beyond my expectations. His expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to achieving the best possible outcome were evident throughout the entire process. He took the time to mentor me, ensuring I understood the legal complexities involved to make informed decisions. Alex is the kind of guy you would want to have a beer with and has made a meaningful impact on me. I also want to acknowledge Todd Spodek, the leader of the firm, who played a crucial role in my case. His leadership and support bolstered the efforts of Alex, and his involvement highlighted the firm's commitment to excellence. Thanks to Alex Zhik and Todd Spodek, I achieved the outcome I desired, and I am incredibly grateful for their professionalism, expertise, and genuine care. If you're in need of legal representation, look no further than this outstanding team.

Time is of the Essence – Don’t Delay

Here’s the catch, though: as a non-tenured teacher, you’re on a tight timeline. Most contracts only require minimal notice before termination. And there are strict deadlines for filing claims or appeals.In other words? You can’t afford to wait if you think your rights were violated. Contact us immediately to go over your options and start building a defense.

Get a Free Consultation Today

Look, we get it – dealing with potential job loss is stressful and confusing. But you don’t have to face this alone. Take the first step by scheduling a free, confidential consultation with our employment law team. During the consult, we’ll listen to your story, explain your rights, and lay out a game plan for moving forward. No pressure, no obligation – just honest advice from attorneys who truly care. It’s simple: every single client deserves honesty and white glove service. And at Spodek Law Group, that’s exactly what you’ll get. So what are you waiting for? Protect your career and your future today.

Navigating Disciplinary Charges and Hearings

Okay, let’s get into the nitty-gritty: what happens if your school district actually files disciplinary charges against you? Well, strap in – because this is where things can get complicated.As a non-tenured teacher, you don’t have the same robust due process rights as tenured staff. No automatic right to a hearing before termination. But, you do have some protections.

Understanding the Disciplinary Process

First, your district has to provide written notice of the charges. Could be anything from insubordination to incompetence to misconduct. They’ll outline the alleged offenses and proposed penalty – often termination. Now, you only have a short window to request a hearing and defend yourself. Miss that deadline, and you may be deemed to have waived your rights. So speed is critical here.

Preparing for Your Disciplinary Hearing

Assuming you request a hearing, that’s where our team springs into action. We’ll comb through every piece of evidence, interview witnesses, and craft a strategic defense. Because here’s the thing: these hearings are essentially mini-trials. You’ll need to refute the charges through testimony and documentation. Having a skilled attorney to present your case is absolutely vital. We know all the tactics districts use to try and terminate non-tenured teachers. We’ll be ready to counter every single one. From exposing unfair evaluation practices to highlighting discriminatory motives, we leave no angle unexplored.

Potential Outcomes and Next Steps

Now, the hearing officer will ultimately decide if termination is warranted based on the evidence. It’s not an easy battle, but we’ve secured many favorable rulings for non-tenured clients.If the decision goes against you, we can also advise on appealing through proper channels. Or, in cases of discrimination or retaliation, filing complaints with the right state/federal agencies. The key? Having a tenacious advocate who understands the intricacies of this process. An advocate committed to vindicating your rights as an educator every step of the way.

Navigating Contract Non-Renewals

Of course, disciplinary charges aren’t the only threat to non-tenured teachers’ job security. For many, the bigger worry is having their contract simply not renewed at the end of the year.Now, your district may claim they have complete discretion here. That they can choose not to renew you for any reason whatsoever. But that’s just not true.

Unlawful Reasons for Non-Renewal

While the standards are lower than for termination, your contract still can’t be non-renewed for unlawful reasons. Things like:

  • Discrimination based on race, gender, age, disability, etc.
  • Retaliation for reporting misconduct or advocating for students
  • Exercising rights like taking medical leave
  • Whistleblowing activities protected by law

If we can show the stated reasons were just a pretext, we can absolutely challenge that non-renewal decision. Through litigation if needed.

Requesting a “Fair Hearing” on Non-Renewal

Another key protection? Your right to request an informal “fair hearing” before the school board. An opportunity to make your case for renewal directly to the decision-makers. These hearings require careful preparation and skilled advocacy. We’ll help you gather supporting documentation, line up character witnesses, and deliver a compelling presentation. The goal? Convincing the board their non-renewal decision was mistaken or improper. While an uphill battle, we’ve secured many reversals through this process.

Negotiating Separation Terms

Of course, sometimes non-renewal is inevitable despite our best efforts. In those cases, we shift our focus to negotiating the most favorable separation terms possible. Things like proper notice, compensation, benefits, and – most critically – securing a positive letter of recommendation. All to minimize fallout and protect your future career prospects. Because at the end of the day, that’s what this is all about. Ensuring one district’s decision doesn’t completely derail an otherwise promising teaching career.

Taking on Discrimination and Retaliation

Discrimination and retaliation are two of the most common – and pernicious – threats facing non-tenured educators. And they’re also top priorities for our firm’s advocacy. The sad truth is, many school districts still engage in these unlawful practices. Using non-renewal as a pretext to push out teachers based on their race, gender, age, disability status, or other protected traits. Maybe you were denied reasonable accommodations you were legally entitled to. Or faced harassment and hostility from administrators after reporting misconduct or advocating for students. Whatever the circumstances, you have rights. And we have a comprehensive array of strategies to enforce them.

Filing Discrimination/Retaliation Complaints

Depending on the situation, we may start by filing complaints with the appropriate state or federal agencies. The New York State Division of Human Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), etc. Their investigations and findings can substantiate your claims – providing critical evidence and ammunition for further legal action.

Pursuing Litigation for Damages

From there, we can file civil lawsuits against the district seeking compensatory damages, back pay, and more. We’ve secured multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts in many of these cases.But just as importantly, this litigation puts public pressure on districts to change their ways. Shining a light on discriminatory practices and creating a financial incentive to end them once and for all.

Getting You Reinstated

For many non-tenured teachers, the ultimate goal is getting their job back. And if discrimination or retaliation was the driving factor behind your non-renewal, we’ll pursue that vigorously.Through negotiation or court orders, we’ll fight to have you reinstated with full back pay and benefits. Ensuring the unlawful actions of a few don’t derail your passion for teaching. Because at the end of the day, that’s what this is all about: protecting good teachers and ensuring all students have access to a quality education. Delivered by engaged, empowered professionals free from discrimination.

Holding Districts Accountable

Speaking of holding districts accountable – that’s another major piece of our non-tenured teacher advocacy. Pushing back against unfair policies, practices, and workplace cultures that jeopardize educators’ rights. Maybe your performance evaluations were riddled with bias, inconsistencies, and bad faith. Or there’s a systemic problem with administrators abusing their power over non-tenured staff.Whatever the issue, we have a range of strategies to demand reform and get problems fixed. Strategies like:

Policy Audits and Recommendations

Our team can conduct comprehensive audits of a district’s HR policies, evaluation rubrics, training protocols, and more. Identifying areas of risk and providing concrete recommendations. The goal? Proactively addressing issues before more teachers’ rights are violated. Pushing for clear, consistent, non-discriminatory policies and their strict enforcement.

Demanding Corrective Action

For acute issues, we may also pursue formal corrective action plans or consent decrees. Legally-binding remedies that force districts to take concrete steps.Things like overhauling evaluation systems, implementing new training, even removing specific administrators. All under the watchful eye of the courts or regulators.

Raising Public Awareness

And when districts refuse to change? We’re not afraid to raise public awareness through strategic media campaigns, community outreach, and advocacy.Few school boards want the negative publicity and pressure that comes with being branded as hostile to teachers. By shining a light on the issues, we can force real reform. At the end of the day, our mission is to transform the way non-tenured teachers are treated in New York’s schools. Turning the tables on the systemic inequities and injustices that have persisted for far too long.

The Spodek Law Group Difference

Okay, let’s circle back to what really sets Spodek Law Group apart in this fight: our team’s deep expertise and total commitment to client service. We’re not just employment lawyers – we’re education law specialists. Attorneys with decades of experience navigating the complex statutes, regulations, and policies governing New York’s schools. We know the intricacies of the tenure process, evaluation systems, disciplinary procedures, and more. We’ve been through countless hearings and battles with even the largest districts.And when you hire us, you get that expertise combined with truly personal service. We take a hands-on, collaborative approach to every case. Digging into the details, exploring every possible angle, and keeping you informed each step of the way. Because at the end of the day, you’re not just our client. You’re our partner in a shared mission to protect educators’ rights and the integrity of our public schools. From that initial consultation to the final ruling, you’ll feel that commitment in everything we do. It’s that combination of legal brilliance and human compassion that’s at the core of the Spodek Law Group experience.

The Time to Act is Now

Here’s the bottom line: as a non-tenured teacher, you have rights. But actually enforcing those rights? That takes prompt action and strategic legal advocacy. So if you’re facing disciplinary issues, contract non-renewal, or discrimination, don’t wait. The sooner we get involved, the more options we’ll have to protect your career and your future.Just take that first step and schedule a free, fully confidential consultation with our team. We’ll listen to your story, explain your rights, and lay out a game plan for moving forward. From there, you’ve got the full weight of Spodek Law Group’s expertise and resources behind you. Attorneys who will fight tooth-and-nail to deliver the justice you deserve as an educator. Because at the end of the day? This isn’t just a job for us – it’s a calling. A mission to empower teachers and transform our education system for the better.So what are you waiting for? The future of your career is on the line. Take that first step and get Spodek Law Group on your side today.

Schedule Your Consultation Now