Staff Attorney, Education- Education Advocacy Unit

Job Type

Full Time




177 Livingston Street
New York
United States


Brooklyn Defender Services

Education Advocacy Unit – Staff Attorney, Education

Brooklyn Defender Services (“BDS”) is one of the largest public defense offices in the country. BDS provides innovative, interdisciplinary, and client-centered criminal, family, and immigration defense, as well as civil legal services, social work support and advocacy to tens of thousands of clients in Brooklyn every year. BDS represents clients who have diverse, complex and multi-faceted needs in a high volume and fast-paced setting.

BDS’ clients often encounter barriers to education, including unmet special education needs, school suspensions, difficulty accessing alternative education options, and disruptions in education due to foster care placement, incarceration and homelessness. BDS’ Education Advocacy Unit works with BDS’ clients and their families to identify their educational goals and then provide the necessary formal or informal advocacy. Employing a legal and social work team model, we support our clients during court involvement, incarceration and reentry back into the community.


Brief Description of Job

BDS’ Education Advocacy Unit has an opening for a Staff Attorney. This attorney will provide legal representation and informal advocacy to address the education needs of our criminal, family, and immigration defense clients.


  • Work with BDS criminal defense, family defense and immigration defense attorneys to address the educational needs of BDS’ clients;
  • Provide representation at special education impartial due process proceedings, school suspension hearings and school meetings, including Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings;
  • Help clients and their families navigate New York City Department of Education’s services;
  • Actively communicate with incarcerated youth clients and their families and enforce access to appropriate educational services;
  • Collaborate and communicate with school personnel and other community service providers; and
  • Build relationships with community based agencies and other educational resources for BDS clients.


  • Law Degree;
  • Admission to practice in New York State preferred;
  • Experience in special education and/or school discipline law strongly preferred;
  • Interest in working on behalf of court-involved youth and their families;
  • Demonstrated commitment to social justice; 
  • Ability to collaborate with schools, community-based organizations and court partners;
  • Willingness to work in collaborative team of attorneys, social workers and out of court advocates;
  • Strong oral and written communication skills, and
  • Solid organizational skills, initiative and flexibility.

How to Apply: Please send a cover letter explaining your interest in the position along with a resume and writing sample to Please include “Education Staff Attorney” in the subject line.


Deadline: Submissions will be considered on a rolling basis until the deadline, June 15, 2018.


BDS is an equal opportunity employer which supports a policy of non-discrimination in all employment practices including, but not limited to, hiring, transfer, promotions, training, compensation, benefits, lay-offs, and terminations.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required