Court denies DPS injunction to stop teacher sick-outs

A judge today rejected the district's request for a retraining order to stop the teacher sickouts.

A  judge today rejected the district's request for a restraining order to stop the teacher sickouts.

As protesters rallied in solidarity outside, inside the courtroom the judge let most of the people named in the complaint off the hook.

Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled Monday  there is not enough evidence to authorize an injunction against protesting teachers at Detroit Public Schools.

"The court would therefore at this point decline to authorize a temporary restraining order," she said.

Attorneys for both DPS and the Detroit Federation of Teachers will be given another chance to present more information at a hearing scheduled for Feb. 16. Until then, teachers who've organized sick-outs and protests will not be punished.

"The students, the parents, the teachers and the community of Detroit is tired of emergency managers," said Steve Conn, former DFT president. "(And) destruction of its basic Democratic rights, which is destroying its schools."

"Teachers should not have been dragged into this in the first place," said Ivy Bailey, DFT interim president. "Come after me but don't come after the members."

"You stand up for what's right no matter what. No matter who tries to stand against you," said Zachary Sweet, a DPS teacher threatened with injunction.

Two DPS teachers say they did not participate in the sick outs and were wrongfully called to court.

During the hearing at Cadillac Place, protests continued outside.

These teachers skipped class, protesting their pay, class sizes and building conditions.

"The real questions is why, what has caused teachers to take this action," said David Hecker, American Federation of Teachers of Michigan. "That is the underfunding of public education."

Some students at Detroit School of Arts also walked out to join the protest.

"We just hope that people out here are listening to us," said Myesha Johnson. "This is a serious matter. It's terrible and I want people to hear what we have to say."
 


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