Cases & Deals

LAUSD and Superintendent of Schools Roy Romer win dismissal under California anti-SLAPP law in wrongful termination case brought by former principal of high school

Clients Los Angeles Unified School District

Jones Day represented the Los Angeles Unified School District ("LAUSD") and Superintendent of Schools Roy Romer in wrongful termination case brought by a former high school principal who claimed that he had been constructively discharged, defamed, and had his privacy invaded when Superintendent Romer made certain remarks about the principal and his handling of student unrest to the press.

The trial court granted Defendants' anti-SLAPP motion and dismissed the defamation and invasion of privacy claims and, in a case of first impression, the Second District Court of Appeal affirmed the anti-SLAPP ruling in a unanimous published opinion (149 Cal.App.4th 1424 (2007)). The court held that the Superintendent of Schools has absolute immunity when speaking about school district matters.

Defendants were awarded their fees associated with the underlying anti-SLAPP motion and the costs of appeal. The case subsequently settled, with Plaintiff paying LAUSD $25,000.

Norman K. Morrow v. LAUSD, et al., (Case No. BC349335 (Los Angeles Superior Court); Case No. B192627 (Cal. Court of Appeal)

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