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SHELLEM v. SPRINGFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT (APPEAL SHELLEM) (11/13/72)

decided: November 13, 1972.

SHELLEM
v.
SPRINGFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT (APPEAL OF SHELLEM)



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County in case of Paul J. Shellem v. Springfield School District, No. 2045 of 1970.

COUNSEL

Joseph L. Monte, Jr., with him Eckell, Sparks, Vadino, Auerbach & Monte, for appellant.

D. Barry Gibbons, with him George P. Noel and Gibbons, Buckley & Smith, for appellee.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. President Judge Bowman did not participate. Opinion by Judge Mencer.

Author: Mencer

[ 6 Pa. Commw. Page 528]

Paul J. Shellem (Shellem) was employed by the Springfield School District (Springfield) as a substitute teacher for the school year 1969-1970. Shellem assumed his teaching duties in September 1969, and his employment was terminated by Springfield as of January 31, 1970.

On February 27, 1970, Shellem filed a complaint in mandamus against Springfield seeking reinstatement to his teaching position, reimbursement for his salary, certain pension benefits and certain tuition charges. Shellem's action in mandamus was brought in the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County, which found that

[ 6 Pa. Commw. Page 529]

    the dismissal procedure followed by Springfield was defective and substantially ordered all the relief which Shellem had sought. The lower court concluded that Shellem was a substitute teacher, rather than a temporary professional employee, and did not award interest on the salary reimbursement. Timely exceptions were filed by both parties and, following argument before the court en banc, the exceptions of both parties, with a slight modification as to the amount of tuition to be reimbursed, were dismissed by order dated November 9, 1971.

Shellem, on December 10, 1971, filed a praecipe with the Prothonotary of Delaware County to enter judgment on the lower court's order. Judgment was entered by the Prothonotary on December 10, 1971, and Shellem filed this appeal on January 10, 1972. Springfield has filed a motion to quash the appeal on the basis that the appeal was not timely filed. We must grant the motion to quash.

Section 502(a) of the Appellate Court Jurisdiction Act, Act of July 31, 1970, P.L. 673, No. 223, 17 P.S. ยง 211.502(a), states that ". . . an appeal under this act from any order shall be filed within thirty days of its entry." Here, Shellem contends that the thirty-day period must be computed from December 10, 1971, when judgment was entered by the Prothonotary. Even if correct in this contention, Shellem's appeal was filed on the thirty-first day thereafter and was not timely.

However, we hold that the thirty-day period commenced to run from November 9, 1971, when the lower court en banc dismissed the exceptions and entered and docketed its final order. Mandamus is an extraordinary writ which lies to compel the performance of a ministerial act or mandatory duty where there is a clear legal right in the ...


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