Edward J. Sklar

Partner | Walnut Creek

Attorney Insights

Tel: 925.953.1620
Fax: 925.953.1625
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Edward J. Sklar is the Managing Partner of Lozano Smith's Walnut Creek office. Mr. Sklar advises school districts on managing California's charter school landscape, serving as co-chair of the firm's Charter Schools Practice Group. He is an authority on all aspects of a public school district's obligations to comply with California's Charter Schools Act, including charter oversight, facilities, petition review and revocation. Mr. Sklar also provides guidance to school districts that want to establish their own "dependent" charter schools.

Mr. Sklar also advises school districts on all legal issues that arise in the routine course of educating students. This includes matters of student discipline, residency, student records, civil rights, and compliance with state and federal education reform measures. He has extensive experience advising clients on compliance with the Brown Act and the Public Records Act.

Presenter Experience

Mr. Sklar has provided training and conducted seminars on a number of topics for multiple organizations. They include the California School Boards Association (CSBA), National School Boards Association (NSBA), Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH) annual conference, CASH Leadership Academy, Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) annual conference, ACSA Superintendent Symposium, and California Association of Supervisors of Child Welfare and Attendance (CASCWA) conference.

Additional Experience

Prior to joining Lozano Smith, Mr. Sklar practiced civil litigation at Lewis, D'Amato, Brisbois & Bisgaard, LLP, and Cesari, Werner & Moriarty, both in San Francisco. The fast-paced practice of litigation provided the training ground for his vast experience in settlement negotiations and his advocacy skills in courtrooms and administrative hearings.


Mr. Sklar received his J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law and his B.A. from Rutgers University.

A Return to Sports? California Interscholastic Federation Issues Guidelines for Return to Physical Activity and Training

By: Edward SklarChelsea Olson Murphy-

July 2020Number 53Among the many questions school districts are struggling with as they prepare for the fall semester, is whether, and to what extent, athletics and other extracurricular activities may resume. The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF), the organization that governs high school sports in California, has partially answered that question by issuing its initial "CIF Guidelines for Return to Physical Activity/Training" ("Guidance"). CIF also announced the decision about whet...

Teachers’ Union Prevails at PERB in Effort to Organize Charter Schools

By: Edward Sklar-

July 2020Number 54The Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) recently held that a teachers' union's petitions for recognition at three charter schools were appropriate under the Education Employment Relations Act (EERA). Most importantly, PERB held that the union demonstrated sufficient majority support among employees of the schools to be certified as the exclusive representative of each school.In this case, the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) filed three separate petitions for recognit...

California Department of Education Provides Grading and Graduation Guidance for Local Educational Agencies During School Closures

By: Edward SklarSophia Cohn-

April 2020Number 21Last week, the California Department of Education (CDE) released its highly-anticipated guidance to school districts, county offices of education and charter schools (collectively, LEAs) regarding course grading and graduation requirements as LEAs proceed with delivery of their educational programs through distance learning during the COVID-19 crisis.The CDE guidance can be found here https://www.cde.ca.gov./ls/he/hn/gradegraduationfaq.asp. CDE's primary goal in providing t...

New Law Prohibits Barriers To Charter School Enrollment

By: Edward SklarSophia Cohn-

November 2019Number 69A new law is intended to discourage the improper recruitment and disenrollment of charter school students, particularly students who belong to certain protected classes. Recently signed by Governor Newsom, Senate Bill (SB) 75 adds a provision to California's Charter Schools Act to prohibit charter schools from discouraging a student from enrolling or continuing to enroll in the charter school.The law lists explicitly unlawful bases for "counseling out" students and their...

New Law Allows Former Students To Change Name And Gender On Past Student Records

By: Edward Sklar-

October 2019Number 48Assembly Bill (AB) 711 establishes a process for former students to change their name and gender on pupil records, including diplomas.Existing law requires school districts to maintain and preserve, in perpetuity, certain mandatory pupil records, even after a student graduates. AB 711 was enacted to address the needs of former students and to protect their privacy rights. Prior to the enactment of this statute, former students' prior legal names (or "dead names") and/or g...

Governor Newsom Signs Comprehensive Reforms for Charter Schools

By: Megan MacyErin HamorEdward SklarCourtney de Groof-

October 2019Number 49In the largest overhaul of California's Charter Schools Act ("Act") since it was enacted in 1992, Governor Gavin Newsom signed AB 1505 and AB 1507 on October 3, 2019. The Act authorizes the establishment and operation of charter schools in California. The closely watched and hotly debated reforms impact most aspects of charter school authorization, including oversight, appeals, and renewals. Enactment of AB 1505 and AB 1507 follows months of negotiations and compromises f...

New Guidance Answers Questions Regarding FERPA And School Law Enforcement Units

By: Edward SklarAlyssa Bivins-

May 2019Number 23The United States Department of Education (Department) issued answers to 37 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The FAQs focus on how FERPA relates to school law enforcement units and school resource officers (SROs). The full document, issued by the Department on February 12, 2019, is available here.The Department issued the FAQs in response to the Final Report of the Federal Commission on School Safety (Report), ...

Sunshine Laws To Begin Shining On Charter Schools: Charter Schools Subject To Public Transparency Laws

By: Edward Sklar-

January 2019Number 7The California Attorney General recently issued a long-awaited opinion addressing the applicability of certain "sunshine" laws to charter schools. Specifically, the Attorney General concluded that California charter schools and their governing bodies are subject to the Ralph M. Brown Act (Brown Act), the California Public Records Act (Public Records Act), Government Code section 1090 and the Political Reform act of 1974. The opinion further states that the books and record...

New Laws Impacting Media Literacy, Financial Aid Applications and the “A-G” Course List Will Soon Go into Effect

By: Edward Sklar-

December 2018Number 89Governor Jerry Brown recently signed several bills into law that impact student instruction for public schools. Senate Bill (SB) 830 and Assembly Bills (AB) 2015 and 2239 relate to media literacy, instruction regarding the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the California Dream Act Application, and the addition of courses to the "A-G" course list.SB 830 Recognizing the influence of social media and the proliferation of false news stories, SB 830 intends...

New Bills Remove Obstacles to Graduation for Migrant and Immigrant Students

By: Edward SklarBradley Sena-

December 2018 Number 83 Assembly Bills (AB) 2121 and 2735 will make it easier for migrant students and English learners to access courses in core curriculum subjects and obtain course credit necessary for graduation. Both bills were signed by Governor Jerry Brown in September 2018. AB 2121 will become effective on January 1, 2019, while AB 2735 will take effect at the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year. AB 2735 Existing law requires schools to ensure that students with limited E...

New Laws will Require Charter Schools to Provide Meals, Sexual Health Education

By: Edward SklarKate Holding-

October 2018Number 57The Legislature has expanded requirements for charter schools in 2019. Assembly Bill (AB) 1871 will require charter schools to provide meals to needy students, while AB 2601 will require charters to provide sexual health education to students in grades 7-12.Assembly Bill 1871Starting on July 1, 2019, AB 1871 will require California charter schools to provide needy students with one nutritionally adequate free or reduced price meal each day. Charter schools were previously...

Field Trip Immunity Does Not Apply to a Community College’s Hosting of an Intercollegiate Athletic Event

By: Edward Sklar-

August 2018Number 44Community college districts are generally immune from liability for injuries sustained in the course of field trips and excursions under the California Code of Regulations, title 5, section 55220. However, in Anselmo v. Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District, an appellate court determined that such immunity does not apply to an injury sustained during an intercollegiate athletic tournament.BackgroundIn this case, a community college hosted an intercollegiate beach v...

Charter Schools Must Obtain Separate Approvals for New Schools, Renewals, and Revisions, Court Rules

By: Edward SklarRyan TungAlyse Pacheco Nichols-

March 2018 Number 10 A California appellate court has published a decision affirming that charter schools must obtain separate approvals for new initial petitions, charter renewals, and material revisions to charter school petitions. InToday's Fresh Start Charter School v. Inglewood Unified School District, et al. (Feb. 7, 2018, Case No. B280986) ___ Cal.App.5th ___, the Second District Court of Appeal issued a published decision, concluding that: (1) Charter schools may not use a renewal p...

Legislative Update: California’s Charter School Students Win New Protections

By: Edward Sklar-

October 2017 Number 70 A new law aims to ensure equal access for students seeking to enroll in charter schools and to end the practice of dismissing, or "counseling out," charter school students without due process. Assembly Bill (AB) 1360 takes effect on January 1, 2018. The bill gives charter authorizers a new tool for ensuring that charters do not engage in discriminatory admissions practices and provides students more due process during disciplinary proceedings. A description of th...

Charter Schools Facilities Request Deadlines Looming

By: Edward Sklar-

October 2017 Number 71 Commonly referred to as "Prop. 39," Education Code section 47614 requires that, in certain circumstances, school districts must provide facilities to charter schools. Pursuant to Prop. 39, charter schools must request facilities for the 2018-2019 school year, in writing, by November 1, 2017. Because Prop. 39 triggers certain obligations for a school district, it is best to be prepared for the upcoming facilities request season. A charter school's timely faciliti...

Charter School Reform Laws Have Been Enacted – Now What?

By: Megan MacyEdward Sklar-

Following months of discussion regarding the impact that charter schools have had on traditional public schools, the Legislature has passed, and Governor Newsom has signed, two bills that will have wide-ranging impacts on California charter schools and their authorizers. Joining host Devon Lincoln to discuss these new laws, and what charter school authorizers need to know about these changes, are attorneys Megan Macy and Ed Sklar.

Course Correction? The Legislature Looks at Big Changes for Charter Schools in California

By: Edward SklarErin Hamor-

Host Devon Lincoln talks with Ed Sklar and Erin Hamor about new charter school legislation causing a stir in Sacramento. If enacted, the pending bills will drastically alter California’s current charter school landscape.

How Many Charter Schools Are Too Many Charter Schools? A Statewide Debate

By: Edward SklarClaudia Weaver-

Devon Lincoln talks with charter school law experts Ed Sklar and Claudia Weaver about the statewide conversation currently surrounding charter schools and the impact they have on traditional public schools. From recent teacher strikes, to the election of a new Superintendent of Public Instruction, to a raft of new legislative proposals, the role of charter schools is front and center in California politics right now. Ed and Claudia discuss the shift in the debate regarding charter schools, the origins of this debate, the issues it raises, and what the future might hold for educational options in the state.