Stephanie Lovett-Bowman is a litigator and counselor. She specializes in helping school districts and other educational institutions resolve disputes and implement best practices to proactively avoid risk and conflict. Her goal is to help schools maximize their time and resources so they can focus on what they do best, educating students.
As a former investigative attorney for the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Stephanie has unique insight to advise educational institutions with responding to OCR and other governmental agency investigations. Her investigative work at OCR also provides her significant experience in conducting internal investigations for schools and other organizations.
Stephanie regularly represents schools in administrative proceedings and lawsuits involving discrimination, employment contracts, student bullying and harassment, and regulatory compliance. She also has significant appellate experience, having successfully argued appeals in front of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Missouri Court of Appeals.
Among other matters, Stephanie counsels schools on sensitive situations including employee terminations, discipline, and leave issues. Stephanie is also well-versed in drafting board policies and regulations that comply with the complex legal regulations that surround the public school system. She frequently provides training to supervisors and employees to help schools prevent complaints and concerns from arising. Stephanie provides counsel regarding federal and state education laws, including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Section 504, teacher tenure laws, sunshine laws, and constitutional issues.
Prior to becoming an attorney, Stephanie worked as a journalist for a Philadelphia newspaper.
Highlights of Stephanie’s experience include:
- Tried special education due process hearing regarding sufficiency of school district’s evaluation and educational program for student, resulting in hearing commissioner decision in favor of school district on all issues.
- Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a school district and school principal in a suit by a former student pressing claims under the U.S. Constitution for the defendants’ alleged failure to respond to racial discrimination by an employee and students.
- Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a school district and four administrators in school bullying case based on immunity defenses and failure to articulate legal theories actionably under the Missouri Human Rights Act. (Affirmed on appeal.)
- Obtained dismissal of multiple lawsuits against a charter school based on the school’s compliance with Missouri vaccination laws.
- “Back-to-School Hot Topics,” Labor & Employment Seminar, October 2022
- “Workplace Investigations: Keeping your Hands on the Wheel and Yours Eyes on the Prize,” Spencer Fane WorkSmarts Seminar, September 2022
- “#MeTooK12: Title IX investigations in the K-12 Environment,” Missouri School Boards’ Association Conference, Lake of the Ozarks, MO, September 2018
- “Disability Accommodations: Common Complaints and Tips,” Missouri Community College Association, June 2017
- “Retaliation: the No. 1 Employment Claim,” Labor & Employment Seminar, May 2015
- “Best Practices for Workplace Investigations,” Labor & Employment Seminar, May 2014
- “Social Media 3.0,” Labor & Employment Law Seminar, May 2013
- “Preventing Employment Discrimination Claims,” Missouri School Boards Association, Lake of the Ozarks, MO, September 2012
- “Disciplining Off Campus Speech,” Education Law Seminar, December 2011
- “Service Animals,” Education Law Seminar, December 2011
- “School District Civil Immunity,” Missouri School Boards’ Association Conference, Lake of the Ozarks, MO, October 2011
- “Critical Legal Guidance for School Nurses,” 33rd Annual School Health Conference, Children’s Mercy Hospital, August 2011
- “Student Expression: An Overview of Free Speech and the First Amendment,” Missouri School Boards Association, Lake of the Ozarks, MO, October 2010
- Kansas Bar
- Missouri Bar
- Council of School Attorneys
- Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association
- Association for Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City
- Kansas City Tomorrow – class of 2017, The Civic Council of Greater Kansas City
- Operation Breakthrough volunteer
- Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers, Rising Stars, 2015, 2022
- Elected to Order of the Coif, University of Kansas School of Law
- Law School Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholastic Achievement, University of Kansas School of Law
- Editor-in-chief of the Kansas Journal of Law & Public Policy, University of Kansas School of Law
Contact Stephanie Lovett-Bowman at 816.292.8216 or firstname.lastname@example.org.