Daily Briefs

Justices sympathetic to girl suing school over service dog

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court appears sympathetic to a 12-year-old Michigan girl with cerebral palsy who wants to sue school officials for refusing to let her bring a service dog to class.

Most of the justices hearing arguments in the case Monday seemed to agree that federal disability laws allow Ehlena Fry to pursue her case in court.

Lower courts ruled against her, saying the dispute over the fluffy white Goldendoodle named Wonder first had to go through a lengthy administrative process.

Fry and her parents say federal laws allow them to bypass administrative hearings and go directly to court. The school district claims the family is trying to evade a process that Congress put in place to encourage the informal resolution of educational disputes.


Obama appoints MSU professor to Juvenile Justice Council

Michigan State University scholar Francisco Villarruel was selected by President Barack Obama to serve on the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

The 18-member council develops juvenile delinquency prevention programs and programs for missing and exploited children.

Half of the council’s members represent federal agencies including the Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services, while practitioner members such as Villarruel are appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives, the Senate majority leader or the president, based on their knowledge of juvenile justice.

At MSU, Villarruel is a professor and associate chairperson for education in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies and a senior fellow for University Outreach and Engagement. Since 1988 he has held potions at the university relating to diversity and inclusion as well as serving on several boards that advocate for youth justice.


Michigan State  University fights to protect trademarks

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request show that Michigan State University sent 10 cease and desist letters to businesses and individuals between March and September.

The Lansing State Journal reports that the letters are part of the university’s efforts to protect its 30 trademarks registered with federal and state agencies, including its mascot’s image, its signature block S and the phrase “Go Green, Go White.”

The university’s licensing office also sent more than 1,300 takedown requests last year for material that infringed on its trademarks on Facebook.

The office’s director, Samantha Stevens, says an increased effort to protect the trademarks began a few years ago, mirroring a nationwide trend among public universities. She says the university risks losing their protected status if they don’t fight to preserve its trademarks.


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