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Seminar Detail

Section 504 in Connecticut

Friday, November 8, 2013 at 8:00 AM - 3:45 PM

This event is not currently available for purchase.

For more information: Call (800) 844-8260
Course Description:

If you attend only one seminar this year, it has to be Section 504.

This seminar will provide an extensive, yet detailed, overview of Section 504 regulations, cases, and practical issues that significantly affect your K-12 district compliance. Join school law attorneys Michael P. McKeon and Mark J. Sommaruga as they provide the essential information and practical guidance on what it means to your school.

Questions that will be answered include:
  • How have the ADA Amendments and new federal regulations changed the eligibility criteria under Section 504?
  • What is the school district's obligation to identify and evaluate students? Are you under or over identifying?
  • When is an individual medical plan not sufficient?
  • What are the new rules regarding service animals?
  • How do you ensure equal access and equal treatment with respect to the use of emerging technologies?
  • What are district responsibilities for providing disabled students with opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities, including sports?
  • What constitutes ‘reasonable accommodations’ for field trips?
  • How are discipline and behavioral issues handled with a student eligible under Section 504, as compared/contrasted with a student eligible under IDEA?
  • Can I be personally sued?

  1. Identify the qualifying conditions that warrant the development of a Section 504 Plan.
  2. Determine the difference between the need for a Section 504 Plan and an I.E.P.
  3. Discuss the legal concepts and protections as found within Section 504.
  4. Explain the requirements for Child Find, behavioral accommodations/modifications and other supports in a 504 Plan.
  5. Describe the common issues facing parents and school district staff with regard to Section 504.
  6. Discuss recent case law under Section 504 and its implications.


Mark J. Sommaruga, is with the law firm of Pullman & Comley, LLC. Mark has provided legal counsel to Connecticut municipalities and school boards, other public sector clients, and private sector clients for more than 25 years. His extensive experience with these clients includes labor, employment, education, civil rights, special education, municipal law, construction law, tort matters, worker’s compensation, and assorted other litigation in the state and federal courts on both the trial and appellate court levels, as well as before various state and federal agencies such as the State of Connecticut and U.S. Departments of Education. He routinely counsels school district clients on a wide variety of education law issues relating to student discipline, special education, discrimination, abuse/neglect, residency/school accommodations, and policy review. He has been a presenter at numerous workshops, seminars and conferences on municipal, education, special education, labor and employment law issues, including those sponsored by the Connecticut Bar Association and the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education. He is a frequent presenter at the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education’s annual convention. Mark has written numerous articles on employment law and school law issues in various trade journals and newsletters and is the author of Understanding the Connecticut Freedom of Information Act and Access to Public Meeting and Records (Fourth Edition, 2013).

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Mark Sommaruga is a member of Pullman & Comley, LLC. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Mark Sommaruga is a member of the Connecticut Bar Association; Hartford County Bar Association; National School Boards Association Council of School Attorneys; and Connecticut Council of School Attorneys.


Michael P. McKeon is with the law firm of Pullman & Comley, LLC. He represents boards of education, municipalities and private-sector employers across Connecticut in both federal and state courts on both the trial and appellate levels, as well as before federal and state boards and commissions. An attorney for almost 30 years, he is a member of the School Law Section of the firm’s Labor, Employment Law and Employee Benefits Department. Michael has established new case law in Connecticut in the areas of special education and Title IX. The favorable decisions he has obtained for Connecticut school districts have been cited by courts across the country and have been widely reported in The Hartford Courant, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe and The Connecticut Law Tribune, as well as in television news reports. Mike is a frequent speaker on education issues, including on the national level at both the National School Boards Association’s annual conference and the Council of School Attorney’s annual conference. Attorney McKeon has repeatedly spoken at the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education’s annual convention on special education law, gender equality in student athletics, and both gender and disability-based student harassment, and regularly presents at Connecticut Council of Administrators of Special Education forums. He has served as a hearing officer in Section 504 hearings.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Michael McKeon is a member of Pullman & Comley, LLC. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Michael McKeon is a member of the Connecticut Bar Association; Hartford County Bar Association; and Connecticut and National Councils of School Attorneys.
Credits listed below are for full attendance at the live event only. After attendance has been verified, pre-registered attendees will receive an email from PESI Customer Service with the subject line, “Evaluation and Certificate” within one week. This email will contain a link to complete the seminar evaluation and allow attendees to print, email or download a certificate of completion if in full attendance. For those in partial attendance (arrived late or left early), a letter of attendance is available through that link and an adjusted certificate of completion reflecting partial credit will be issued within 30 days (if your board allows). Please see “live seminar schedule” for full attendance start and end times. NOTE: Boards do not allow credit for breaks or lunch.

If your profession is not listed, please contact your licensing board to determine your continuing education requirements and check for reciprocal approval. For other credit inquiries not specified below, or questions on home study credit availability, please contact or 800-844-8260 before the event.

Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.

The planning committee and staff who controlled the content of this activity have no relevant financial relationships to disclose. For speaker disclosures, please see speaker bios.

PESI, Inc. offers continuing education programs and products under the brand names PESI, PESI Healthcare, PESI Rehab and Psychotherapy Networker.

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