Appeals court sides with teachers in lawsuit

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LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — The Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal has affirmed a state district judge's decision that the Lafayette Parish School Board owes two employees back pay.

The Advocate reports ( ) the judge also ordered the school system on Wednesday to reinstate the salaries the two educators earned while working at the now-closed Charter High School starting with the 2012-13 school year.

Jan Aillet, a librarian, and Marilyn Doucet, an English teacher, were displaced from Charter High School when it was closed at the end of the 2011-12 school year. The school was a dropout-prevention program for students who fell academically behind in their studies for various reasons with students also attending during the summer.

Many of the students were considered high-risk, with some homeless and others with children of their own.

As part of the Charter High staff, the women worked on a 244-day schedule, which resulted in a higher rate of pay than their 182-day counterparts at traditional schools in the districts.

Aillet's salary was $80,104 prior to Charter High's closure, and her salary was adjusted to $60,214 starting with the 2012-13 school year. Doucet's salary was $74,423 and then changed to $56,207.

The women filed a lawsuit in district court in 2012 asking the court for back pay and the reinstatement of their pay. In their lawsuit, the women cited state law that protects teacher pay from being reduced from the prior year's salary unless it involves a demotion, accounting error or loss of voter-approved funding for supplemental pay.


Information from: The Advocate,

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