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I was a tenured teacher charged with 3020a. To avoid losing my license I was told to resign irrevocably and any prospective

Staten Island, NY |

employers would get a neutral recommendation. Last week when I gave a soon to be employer my social and he checked with the board what came up was : unemployable. Does that sound neutral to you. As the circumstances surrounding my decision to resign were unfair to begin with. I am pissed. How much would it cost ? I already wrote a letter to the Chancellor, and they in turn sent it to labor relations.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Under the circumstances, It would make sense to sit down with an attorney for a consultation. Your rights would center around the reasons for your resignation. If you are a New York City school teacher, you might have certain rights under your union or collective bargaining agreement. Further, when you resigned, the specific language in your resignation and any other documents you may have signed may come into play. Further, there are time limitations in terms of your rights to contest certain actions that may also come into play. For these reasons, I would look for an attorney experienced in both labor and employment law. It is my recommendation that you act relatively quickly to preserve any rights you may have.

    William J. Lasko, Attorney at Law, 203 329-6602


  2. Section 3020-a of the Education Law sets forth the disciplinary procedures and rights to a hearing that you are entitled to as a tenured employee. Your question does not indicate if you were given a hearing and/or at what stage of the disciplinary proceedings this settlement occured. Also, you do not indicate whether the terms of this settlement were put into a writting signed by you and the school district/department of education. In my experience, these types of settlements are almost always put in writting. If the district/department of education agreed to give you a nuetral recomendation and is now giving you a negative recomendation, it would be in breach of the terms of the settlement agreement and you would have every right to sue the district/department of education for damages arising from breach of the agreement. As to sending this dispute to labor relations, this may not be an issue for the union. Usually the union protects your rights to representation at a 3020(a) hearing and the union contract gives the union rights to file a grievance of any improper termination. Because the settlement has already been agreed to by you and the School District, you may not be required to pursue your claim through the union. I would contact an attorney as soon as possible for a consultation concerning this matter as there may be certain time limitations that you will be required to comply with when making a claim. Make sure the attorney is well versed in the Education Law and bring him all documents you have pertaining to the disciplinary proceeding and the settlement, as well as al correspondence between you and the Chancellor or the Union.

    As for how much this would cost, different firms with different levels of experience charge different fees for this type of work. If you chose to contact my firm I would be happy to discuss fees with you, but there is no general rule regarding the fees charged in these types of cases.

    Good luck.


  3. Was there any writing that recorded the terms of your resignation?

    This answer does not constitute legal advice and you should contact an attorney to confirm or research further any statements made in this answer. Any statements of fact or law I have made in this answer pertain solely to New York State and should not be relied upon in any way in any other jurisdiction. Additionally, we also encourage you to reach out to us via Twitter (https://twitter.com/#!/WhiteRoseMarks) or Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/WhiteRoseMarks) if you have follow up questions as we do not monitor questions after providing an initial answer.

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