Howard practices in all aspects of labor, education and school law including litigation, contract negotiations, dispute resolution, special education, administrative hearings, research and counsel on legal policy, educational programs and budgetary issues. He provides guidance to education stakeholders with a legal perspective on program content. He assists BOCES and school districts in understanding and implementing the components of the Regents Education Reform Agenda, including Annual Professional Performance Reviews (APPR), Common Core standards, aligned assessments, school and student data collection, and test development and administration. Howard investigates and responds to teacher and student disciplinary matters including complaints issued by the Office of Civil Rights (OCR), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the New York State Division for Human Rights (NYSDHR).
Having directed and served in various offices within the New York State Education Department, Howard brings more than 21 years of experience in education law, policy and operations. As executive coordinator of the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Support, he initiated key programs in Career and Technical Education, Learning Standards Development and Adult Education including GED funding, preparation and testing. As assistant counsel to the commissioner, Howard initiated the Office of School Personnel Review and Accountability (OSPRA), to help ensure compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements for teacher and school staff background checks and disciplinary cases. During his career with the department, he also served as coordinator of operations and legal affairs for the Office of State Assessment, supporting statewide test development and enhanced practices through improved accountability and compliance with psychometric standards. As bureau chief, assistant counsel and coordinator of investigations in the Office of Higher Education, Howard developed and implemented initiatives to improve the quality and oversight of licensed vocational schools throughout New York state. He was also executive coordinator and assistant counsel of the Adult Education Programs and Policy Unit in the Office of Adult Career and Continuing Education Services. Howard is a former assistant district attorney and was engaged in private practice in New York City and New Jersey.