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EASTERN YORK SCHOOL DISTRICT v. DIANA L. LONG AND KERRY A. WHITE (09/26/79)

decided: September 26, 1979.

EASTERN YORK SCHOOL DISTRICT, APPELLANT
v.
DIANA L. LONG AND KERRY A. WHITE, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of York County in case of Diana C. Long and Kerry A. White v. Eastern York School District, Civil Action No. 76-S-1803.

COUNSEL

John W. Thompson, Jr., with him Shoemaker, Thompson & Ness, for appellant.

Gerald E. Ruth, for appellee.

Judges Blatt, DiSalle and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Blatt.

Author: Blatt

[ 46 Pa. Commw. Page 210]

The Eastern York School District (School District) appeals from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of York County which overturned its suspension of Diana L. Long (appellee) from her position as an English teacher. The School District argues (1)

[ 46 Pa. Commw. Page 211]

    that the appellee was not entitled to a hearing under the Local Agency Law,*fn1 (2) that its action in suspending her was proper, and (3) that the lower court erred in ordering her reinstatement "without loss of pay".

The School District had suspended the appellee and denied her request for a hearing, but, after she instituted a suit in mandamus, the School District relented and held a hearing. The School Board then issued an adjudication which upheld the suspension, terming it a furlough, and found that it was justified for two reasons: (1) because "of the alteration of the educational program wherein the total program offerings were modified so as to reduce the electives available to students"; and (2) because the Department of Education had required the School District "to remove certain teachers as Department Heads for the reason that they had not been properly certified," thus additional staff was available for classroom teaching assignments.

Whether or not a suspended professional employee such as the appellee is entitled to a hearing under the Local Agency Law was considered by this Court and answered in the affirmative in Middle Bucks Area Vocational Technical School v. Navarro, 37 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 278, 390 A.2d 325 (1978). We see no occasion to disturb that ruling and must therefore hold that the appellee was entitled to a hearing.

As to the validity of the appellee's suspension, we agree with the court below that it was improper. Section 1124 of the Public School Code of 1949,*fn2 24 P.S. § 11-1124, sets forth four circumstances under which a professional employee may be suspended, and

[ 46 Pa. Commw. Page 212]

    the School District argues, that the following ...


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