Pa. Supreme Court denies request for ruling on teacher seniority

Friday, June 27, 2014

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has decided not to decide whether the Philadelphia School District has the power to impose work rule changes on teachers next fall.

The School Reform Commission in March asked the State Supreme Court to back the cash-strapped district’s decision to disregard seniority for teacher assignments. The district wanted to sidestep seniority protections when it came to transferring, laying off and hiring-back teachers, but the high court without comment today denied the district’s request for a ruling.

Chief Justice Ron Castille filed a dissenting opinion, saying he believed the Supreme Court was “duty-bound” to decide because the takeover law gave the Supreme Court exclusive jurisdiction over collective bargaining issues. Justice Max Baer joined Castille’s dissent.

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