Rayni came to Raffaele & Associates after practicing special education law in Florida. Rayni is an ardent advocate for youth and young adults with disabilities. She focuses her work on special education law, bullying and discrimination, school discipline and truancy, and statewide legislative and policy advocacy for regulations and statutes impacting children. Rayni’s passion for working with this population began when she started a tennis program for youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder in high school. Thereafter, Rayni volunteered in special education classrooms as a teaching assistant, interned at the National Center for Learning Disabilities, and continued to teach tennis to youth with disabilities.
Prior to joining Raffaele & Associates, Rayni worked as a staff attorney in the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County’s Education Advocacy Project. There, she represented low-income students who were denied enrollment, due process, and access to appropriate educational placements and services due to disabilities, discrimination, mental health issues, and immigration status. Rayni also provided systemic advocacy to families of students who were denied special education services, Limited English Proficient (LEP) students and families who were denied language access, and students facing disproportionate disciplinary measures. Rayni particularly enjoys lecturing and presenting to families and service providers. At Legal Aid, she presented over thirty “Know Your Rights” parent workshops at homeless shelters, low-income medical clinics, parenting resource centers, and service provider agencies, and conducted trainings to attorneys interested in representing children with special education needs. Rayni served as the Chair of the Children’s Rights Committee of the Florida Bar’s Public Interest Law Section prior to moving to Pennsylvania.
Before working at Legal Aid, Rayni performed attorney contract work for a private special education law firm and for Disability Rights Florida and the Florida Justice Institute on a federal disability discrimination lawsuit. Rayni spent several months working as a Visiting Attorney/Practitioner in Residence at the University of Miami School of Law’s Children and Youth Law Clinic, which provides holistic legal representation to foster care youth. Rayni worked with clinical instructors and law students to represent foster care youth in disability, health care, mental health, and special education matters. Before exclusively practicing special education law, Rayni worked for Talenfeld Law, a private firm dedicated to protecting the rights of abused, neglected and injured foster care children in personal injury and civil rights actions.
A graduate of the University of Miami School of Law, Rayni served as a Miami Scholars recipient as well as an ambassador for prospective Scholars. She graduated magna cum laude of her law school class, earning the Order of the Coif. Rayni graduated summa cum laude from Duke University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science. Rayni resides in Philadelphia with her husband.