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MARY F. COLEMAN v. BOARD EDUCATION SCHOOL DISTRICT PHILADELPHIA (03/23/78)

decided: March 23, 1978.

MARY F. COLEMAN, APPELLANT,
v.
BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PHILADELPHIA, APPELLEE, AND BOARD OF REVISION OF TAXES OF THE CITY OF PHILADELPHIA, APPELLEE



COUNSEL

Orlofsky, Cozen & Begier, Harry P. Begier, Jr., Philadelphia, for appellant.

John M. McNally, Jr., Philadelphia, for appellee, Bd. of Revision of Taxes for the City of Philadelphia.

Vincent J. Salandria, Philadelphia, for appellee, Bd. of Ed. of the Sch. Dist. of Philadelphia.

Eagen, C. J., and O'Brien, Roberts, Pomeroy, Nix, Manderino and Packel, JJ. Packel, J., did not participate in the decision of this case.

Author: Eagen

[ 477 Pa. Page 416]

OPINION OF THE COURT

On July 1, 1974, appellant Mary F. Coleman filed in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia a complaint in mandamus against the Board of Education of the School District of Philadelphia [the School District], appellee. The complaint alleged that the School District had unlawfully discharged Coleman from its employ and asked that the School District be ordered to reinstate her as its employee and compensate her for wages lost as a result of her allegedly wrongful dismissal. The School District filed an answer in which it denied that Coleman had been employed by the School District.

Coleman then served upon the School District a request for admissions as to facts and documents, which matters were deemed admitted because of the defendant's failure to respond within ten days of service. See Pa.R.C.P. 4014. The record was further augmented by the admission of a deposition by the executive assistant in the personnel office of the School District. Both parties then filed motions

[ 477 Pa. Page 417]

    for summary judgment, pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. 1098.*fn1 On December 11, 1974, the trial court granted Coleman's motion and denied that of the School District. The School District took a direct appeal to the Commonwealth Court, and that court reversed the order of the trial court granting relief to Coleman and affirmed its order denying relief to the School District.*fn2 Coleman v. Board of Education of the School District of Philadelphia, 23 Pa. Commw. 69, 350 A.2d 904 (1976). We granted Coleman's petition for allowance of appeal, and this appeal followed.

As this Court has previously stated:

"It is axiomatic that mandamus is an extraordinary writ which lies to compel the performance of a ministerial act or a mandatory duty where there is a clear legal right in the plaintiff, a corresponding duty in the defendant, and a want of any other appropriate and adequate remedy. Philadelphia Presbytery Homes, Inc. v. Abington Board of Commissioners, 440 Pa. 299, 303, 269 A.2d 871 (1970); Unger v. Hampton Township, [437 Pa. 399, 401, 263 A.2d 385 (1970)]; Boslover Ahavas Achim Belzer Association v. Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, 425 Pa. 535, 538, 229 A.2d 906 ...


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