Legal Services-Office of General Counsel

  • Shawntoyia "Shawn" Bernard, Esq., General Counsel
    Phone: (561) 434-8751
    3300 Forest Hill Boulevard, Suite C-331
    West Palm Beach, FL 33406

    Purpose and Functions

    The purpose of the Office of General Counsel is to protect the School Board’s interests as it relates to legal matters and support the Superintendent and School District staff in serving the educational needs of students in a legally compliant manner. The General Counsel, assisted by staff attorneys and support personnel, fulfills the following functions:

    • Delivers accurate, responsive legal advice regarding legal, compliance, and litigation matters within the School District,

    • Offers proactive, comprehensive feedback and alternatives that the School Board and District staff may consider to make decisions,

    • Operates as a thought partner before issues arise by providing legal review of policy and practices, within the ethical standards of the Florida Bar,

    • Proposes risk avoidance measures through the early identification of potential legal issues and strategic planning in consultation with District staff,

    • Provides legal defense in dispute settlements and litigation brought against the School District, and

    • Develops legal tools and resources for school leaders and District staff.