Kelli Broers is an attorney in the firm’s Kansas City office and her primary practice area is school law. She represents clients in administrative proceedings and civil litigation as well as assisting with policy review and employment matters.
Immediately prior to joining the firm, Kelli was Assistant General Counsel for the Kansas State Department of Education. She regularly represented the agency before the Office of Administrative Hearings where she prosecuted all disciplinary actions filed against Kansas educators. Her daily work required that she collaborate with school administrators and district attorney’s offices across the state. This past year, she was instrumental in bringing an alleged sex offender for hearing before his criminal case was resolved, which resulted in the Kansas State Board of Education revoking his license.
Kelli also led the effort to revise the Kansas State Board of Education regulations governing educator discipline. The revisions, when formalized, will help better protect Kansas kids and provide better guidance to school districts and educators. She is also believed to be the first agency attorney to successfully argue an educator should be publicly censured—recognizing not all misconduct merits suspension or revocation.
One of Kelli’s favorite responsibilities at KSDE was educating future educators. Continuing a practice began by her predecessor, Kelli began speaking once a semester to education majors at Emporia State University. During her tenure, the presentation began to focus on helping future educators avoid ethical pitfalls and, thus, avoid future disciplinary proceedings. The redesigned program was so popular Kelli was invited to speak with education students at Kansas State University, Bethel College, and Tabor College, and, to speak with Kansas licensure officers.
Kelli has written and given many presentations during her legal career. Most recently, she presented at the 2017 National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) Professional Practices Institute (PPI) in Phoenix, Arizona. PPI is an annual meeting of school administrators, licensure officers, investigators, and attorneys from across the United States and Canada. Its primary focus is teacher licensure, ethics, and discipline. Kelli was a member of a multi-state panel discussing educator ethics resources. She also authored and gave a solo presentation regarding the difficulty of pursuing non-criminal disciplinary cases.
Kelli also served as KSDE’s hearing officer for federal and state review proceedings including CACFP food service appeals and emergency safety intervention requests for review. For the latter, she interviewed school personnel and parents, applied Kansas special education law, and generated a report making findings of fact and compliance recommendations where necessary.
A graduate of the Washburn University School of Law, Kelli participated in its law clinic where she was assigned to the Tribal Court practice area. Her clinic advocacy resulted in the school awarding her the Irvine E. Ungerman Award for Excellence. Following law school, she served in the chambers of Justice Dan Biles at the Kansas Supreme Court. There, she helped edit opinions, draft prehearing memorandum, and learned to love the oxford comma.
Kelli has an interest in local government and recently served on the Johnson County, Kansas, Northwest Consolidated Zoning Board. Kelli now resides with her family in Miami County. She enjoys all outdoor activities and loves her home state: Kansas.