Randall Farmer, a member of Gregory Doyle’s Education Law practice group, has more than 18 years of experience advising school districts.
Mr. Farmer works regularly with clients such as Cobb County School District, Clayton County School District, Elbert County School District and Marietta City School District. He also represents school districts throughout the state of Georgia, including but not limited to Cherokee County School District, Thomas County School District, Sumter County School District, Burke County School District, Mitchell County School District, Tift County School District, Murray County School District, Walker County School District, Randolph County School District, Hancock County School District and Lanier County School District. He has successfully handled Title VII claims, Fair Labor Standards Act cases, investigation of ethics violations, contract disputes, Fair Dismissal Act cases, First Amendment cases, Fourth Amendment cases, False Arrest and Malicious Prosecution claims, special education hearing requests, Title VI investigations from the Office for Civil Rights, and charges of discrimination filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
He provides legal advice to school districts on the Affordable Care Act, procurement matters, risk management issues, personal injury claims, FERPA confidentiality issues, student issues, and compliance with the Open Records Act. Mr. Farmer is also the primary contact for the firm for a major insurance company on school district liability claims.
Mr. Farmer also provides legal advice to school districts on a variety of special education issues from IEPs to due process hearings.
Prior to practicing law, Mr. Farmer worked in the House of Representatives as a legislative assistant to the Honorable Ted Weiss (N.Y.), where he handled a wide variety of legislative and constituent matters, including covering the House Banking Committee. Mr. Farmer
also drafted legislation for Mr. Weiss, including an amendment to the Perkins Loan Act that became federal law. While in Washington, D.C.,
he also co-founded College Bound, an educational non-profit organization to enrich the educational opportunities for D.C. public school students by providing scholarship monies and tutoring. After working in Washington, D.C., Mr. Farmer served as a public school teacher for four years in Atlanta Public Schools.
NOTABLE CLIENT HIGHLIGHTS
Some of Mr. Farmer’s notable achievements on behalf of his clients include:
- Education Law:
- Yates v. Cobb County School District (U.S.D.C. 1:15-cv-3211) (11th Cir. 16-15882) obtained dismissal of First and Fourth Amendment claims; 11th Circuit affirmed;
- Summer Anderson v. Pam Postell, Cherokee County School District (Ga Ct of Appeals Case No. A15A1186) successfully defended personal injury case based on official immunity;
- Long v. Fulton County School District (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:10-CV-3033) obtained dismissal of Title IX claim;
- Hughes, et al v. Fulton County School (R. Allen Hughes, et al. v. Fulton County School System, et al, CAFN: 2012-cv-222449) obtained dismissal of injunctive relief case involving Charter School constitutional amendment ballot measure;
- S.H. v. Clayton County School District (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:16-cv-0126) obtained dismissal without discovery of school district, superintendent and principal in student harassment case;
- Special Education Law:
- VM v. Clayton County School District (OSHA No. 1735860);
- XP v. Cobb County School District (OSHA No. 1732905);
- A.O. v. Cobb County School District (OSHA No. 1724749);
- R.C. v. Cobb County School District (OSAH-DOE-CPEXP-1705013-33);
- B.Q. v. Cobb County School District (OSAH No. 1804044);
- S.S. v. Cobb County School District (OSAH No. 1741135)
- Employment Law:
- Jeremy Partain v. Elbert County School District (SBOE No. 2013-05) successfully defended Fair Dismissal case;
- Monique Caldwell (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:13-cv-01797) awarded summary judgement in FMLA case;
- Sheila Lamar (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:13-cv-1600) awarded summary judgement in Title VII case;
- Wanda Smith (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:10-cv-848), Constance Rolland (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:10-cv-2173), Brian Popham (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:10-cv-2174) successfully defended First Amendment retaliation claims;
- Bynum v. Clayton County School District (U.S.D.C. 1:16-cv-00001) obtained dismissal of FLSA case;
- Burnett v. Fulton County School District (U.S.D.C. Case No. 1:07-cv-300) this was a Fulton case based on Title VII;
- Keegan v. Clayton County School District (Case No. 1:12-cv-3715) awarded summary judgement based on First Amendment retaliation and Georgia Whistleblower claim.
- Mary Sims v. Hancock County School District (U.S.D.C. Case No. 5:15-cv-000285 and Superior Ct. of Hancock Co. 2015-SU-CV-063) obtained dismissal of HCSD police chief in a false arrest case.
PROFESSIONAL & COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
- Member, State Bar of Georgia
- Member, School Attorneys Group
- Member, Defense Research Institute
- Selected for inclusion in Super Lawyers — Rising Stars (2005 Edition)
- Mr. Farmer achieved an AV® PreeminentTM rating on Martindale-Hubbell in Education and Civil Rights law.
PUBLICATIONS & SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS
- Article, “The Crack in the Door: Non-IDEA claims Post-Fry” appeared in COSA’s June 2018 Inquiry & Analysis
- Presenter, “How to Hire and Manage Legal Services,” NSBA Conference (April 2016)
- Article: “School Boards in the Digital Age: Do’s and Don’ts for School Leaders Use of Electronic Media,” appeared in American School Board Journal (July 2015)
- Presenter, “Safety and Security Issues for Georgia School Districts”, Elbert County School District (February 2016)
- Article: “Advocates or Employees: First Amendment Claims Brought by Special Education Teachers” appeared in NSBA COSA’s February 2015 Inquiry & Analysis
- Article, “That’s My Employee?” FLSA Issues with Student Interns, Etc.,” appeared in COSA’s June 2015 Inquiry and Analysis
- Presenter, “Federal Involvement in Local Schools,” Marietta School District (March 2013)
- Presenter, “Self Insurance,” Elbert County School District, Elberton, GA (February 2013)
- Presenter, “Procurement,” Clayton County School District, Jonesboro, GA (March 2012)
- Presenter, “How to Handle Harassment Claims,” Roswell, Georgia (September 2011)
- Presenter, “FLSA Issues,” Chattahoochee Technical College, Powder Springs, GA (April 2011)
- Presenter, “What Can School Officials Say and Do? First Amendment Issues in Schools,” GASPA Conference, St. Simons Island, GA (December 2009)
- Presenter, “Snapshots: Challenging Scenarios Board Members Often Encounter”, Elbert County School District (February 2015)
- Presenter, “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: The Fair Labor Standards Act and Educators,” 2009 Annual GACE Conference, Young Harris, GA (June 2009)
- Presenter, “Contracts 101: What Every Administrator Should Know (And Avoid) When Entering Into Contracts,” 2008 Annual Convention for the Association of School Business Officers, Denver, CO (November 2008)
- Presenter, “What Can Teachers Do, Say and Teach: First Amendment Issues in Teaching,” Harvard Graduate School of Education, Cambridge, MA (July 2007)
- Presenter, “Off Campus Misconduct, On Campus Consequences: The Nexus Between Off Campus Behavior and On Campus Consequences,” Georgia School Boards Association Meeting, Marietta, GA (December 2004)