A School District is one of the largest school districts in the United States, serving over 320,000 students in 600+ schools and employing nearly 40,000 people, most of them teachers. A School District has set ambitious goals to ensure that every student, in every school and every neighborhood, has access to a world-class learning experience that prepares each for success in college, career, and civic life. In order to fulfill this mission, we make three commitments to our students, their families, and all Chicagoans: academic progress, financial stability, and integrity. Six core values are embedded within these commitments – student-centered, whole child, equity, academic excellence, community partnership, and continuous learning.

The Litigation Unit of the Board of Education's Law Department represents the Board, and its employees, in civil suits filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County and in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The Litigation Unit also handles administrative matters and provides client counseling.

Job Summary:
Under direct supervision of the Deputy and Assistant Deputy General Counsel, the Senior Assistant General Counsel will represent A School District and its agents in litigation pending primarily in the Northern District of Illinois, as well as administrative forums (e.g., EEOC, IDHR, and HRC). This position will oversee the work of and partner with Assistant General Counsels on the Federal Litigation team and will have the opportunity to provide meaningful counsel to A School District leadership, informing policy decisions and resource allocation. Matters include employment-related claims (e.g., Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FMLA), civil rights claims brought under 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983, substantive and procedural due process, and Title IX. The Senior Assistant General Counsel will assist the Assistant Deputy General Counsel with managing all federal litigation matters and with key personnel decisions for the team.

The Senior Assistant General Counsel will be held accountable for the following responsibilities:
  • Manage active litigation caseload and serve as primary counsel on cases in which the Board and/or employees are named defendants. This includes taking a primary role in high-profile matters and leading important court appearances and depositions;
  • Supervise AGC's and support staff and provide direction on litigation strategy and overall case management;
  • Review and edit AGC's written work product;
  • Assist the Assistant Deputy General Counsel with managing the unit, including organization, training, mentorship, and performance reviews;
  • Provide client counseling, advice, guidance, and support across a network of schools and departments;
  • Represent the Board and/or employees at settlement conferences; and
  • Analyze case value and make recommendations on case resolutions.

In order to be successful and achieve the above responsibilities, the Senior Assistant General Counsel must possess the following qualifications:

Education Required:
  • Juris Doctorate degree from an accredited law school, required
  • Must be licensed to practice law and in good standing in the State of Illinois
  • Admission to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois is preferred

Experience Required:
  • Minimum of five (5) years of legal experience, including the following, is required:
  • Experience litigation employment-related (e.g., Title VII, ADEA, ADA, etc.) and Civil Rights claims
  • Experience litigating in federal court
  • Trial experience required
  • Experience managing or supervising employees is preferred.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
  • Possess strong communication skills including dispute resolution;
  • Possess the ability to quickly analyze a problem/question and decide the level of importance and when higher level intervention in necessary;
  • Capable of building trusting relationships and functioning effectively with Board agents whose decisions are being challenged in state and federal court;
  • Possess organizational skills and the ability to manage numerous cases simultaneously under pressure and with limited supervision; and
  • Demonstrated ability to take ownership of and solve problems, expeditiously assess issues, and provide sound legal advice

Conditions of Employment:
As a condition of employment with the A School District, employees are required to:
  • Establish/Maintain Chicago Residency - Employees are required to live within the geographic boundaries of the City of Chicago within six months of their A School District hire date and maintain residency throughout their employment with the district. The Chicago residency requirement does not apply to temporary/part-time positions, however, all A School District employees must be residents of Illinois.
  • Be Fully Vaccinated Against COVID-19 - Unless approved for a medical or religious exemption, all employees are required to be up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccinations, including boosters, and to submit proof of vaccination to the district within 30 days of hire. “Up-to-date” on vaccination is defined as being at least two weeks past all primary vaccine doses and any applicable boosters. Unvaccinated staff with an approved exemption must submit to weekly testing.