Practices

School Law

Real Estate

Employment Law

Education

J.D. University of Houston Law Center, 1979

B.A. University of Texas, 1976

Bar Admissions

State of Texas, 1979

U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit

U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas

Jim Whitton has practiced school law for over 35 years, representing boards of numerous independent school districts and private and independent schools throughout Texas. He advises public and private educational entities in all aspects of school and public law, including employment, student discipline, competitive purchasing, real estate, policy development, elections and open government. He has experience defending educational entities before the Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and other state and federal agencies. He is also a frequent speaker at state education conferences and regularly provides training for boards, school administrators and staff.

Mr. Whitton is rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review, signifying the highest level of professional excellence and adherence to the highest ethical standards – a distinction achieved by fewer than 5% of attorneys nationwide.

Publications

“Can You Hear Them Now? Tips For When The Cell Tower Companies Come Calling,” Inquiry and Analysis (June 2009)

“Unanswered Questions About School Vouchers,” Fort Worth Business Press (October 2002)

Presentations

“Can They Really Say That About Me?” Texas Association of School Administrators/Texas Association of School Boards Joint Annual Convention (October 1, 2020)

“Can They Really Say That About Me?” 35th Annual University of Texas School of Law School Law Conference (February 21, 2020)

 “School Law Legislative Update”; Fort Worth, Texas (October 18, 2019)

“Handling Employee and Parent Grievances”, Everman ISD

“Fair and Effective Documentation for Administrators”, Everman ISD

TASB Legal Panel “Ask the Attorneys”, Region 14 Education Service Center, Abilene

TASB Legal Panel “Ask the Attorneys”, Texas A&M Commerce

Legislative Update – March 22, 2018, Education Law Association, Fort Worth Conference

“The Real Shark Tank: Questions and Answers on How to Survive and Succeed”, TASA Midwinter Conference, January 30, 2018

“Sexual Harassment in the K-12 Environment”, All Saints Episcopal Scholl, January 3, 2017

Counselor legal Issues”, Crowley ISD, October 5, 2016

The Dynamic Duo – Fighting for the Truth, Justice, and the ISD Way”, TASA MidWinter Convention, January 26, 2016; Texas Association of School Administrators/Texas Association of School Boards Joint Annual Convention, Houston, TX September 23, 2016.

2015 School Law Post-Legislative Seminar, School District Administrator Workshop

Have Gun, Will? School Safety in a Post-Sandy Hook World, Education Law Association DFW Regional Conference, 2014

2013 Legislative Update, School District Administrator Workshop

Are You Sure Your Independent Contractors Are NOT Your Employees? Texas Association of School Administrators Midwinter Convention and the UNT Higher Ed Law Conference

Can You Hear Them Now? Tips For When The Cell Tower Companies Come Calling, Region XI Superintendent’s Program

Complying With the Public Information Act, Superintendents’ Study Group, ESC Region XI

Conducting Meaningful Grievance Hearings, Superintendents’ Study Group, ESC Region XI

CPS and Custody Issues, Education Law Association, DFW Regional Conference

Ethical Issues Relating to Reporting Requirements, State Bar of Texas School Law Section Annual Retreat

Keeping Schools Safe When Parents Are The Problem, Region XI and Superintendents’ Study Group, ESC Region XI

Off The Record: Answers to Questions We All Want to Know, State Bar of Texas School Law Section Annual Retreat

Open Meetings and Grievances, Region XI Principal Preparation Program

Stump the Lawyer, University of Texas at Arlington Superintendents’ Academy

TASB Legal Update, Region XIV Spring Workshop

Who’s Your Daddy? Complying With New Chapter 176 of the Local Government Code, University of Texas School of Law Annual School Law Conference

Community

Board of Directors and Development Chair, The Center for Transforming Lives, Fort Worth, Texas (2017- Present)

Board of Directors, Trinity Terrace Continuing Care Community, Fort Worth, Texas (2002- Present)

Chair of the Church Council, First United Methodist Church of Fort Worth (2017-2019)

Littlefield Society, University   of Texas at Austin

Chancellor’s Council, University of Texas System

Chair of the Board of Trustees, First United Methodist Church of Fort Worth (2013-2015)

President, Rotary Club of Fort Worth (1995-1996)

Paul Harris Fellow, Rotary Club of Fort Worth (1994)

William B. Todd Service Above Self Award, Rotary Club of Fort Worth (2008)

Chairman of the Board, Fort Worth Region of the American Heart Association (1997)

Vice Chairman of the Board, United Way of Metropolitan Tarrant County (1994)

Leadership Fort Worth

Professional Recognition

Chair, Board of Directors of the Texas Association of School Boards’ Council of School Attorneys (2020-Present)

Super Lawyer in Schools and Education Law by Thomson Reuters, Texas Monthly (2005-2014)

List of Top Attorneys for School and Education Law in Fort Worth, Texas Magazine, 360 West Magazine, and 76107 Magazine (2017- Present)

Executive Council, School Law Section, State Bar of Texas (2008-2010)

Memberships

State Bar of Texas

School Law Section, State Bar of Texas

Tarrant County Bar Association

Texas Association of School Boards Council of School Attorneys

National School Boards Association Council of School Attorneys

Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation

College of the State Bar of Texas