Articles Posted in Supreme Court of Virginia

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Plaintiffs bought this lawsuit against the Fairfax County School Board seeking declaratory judgment and preliminary and permanent injunctive relief for the allegedly unlawful expansion of the school board’s non-discrimination and student code of conduct policies. Plaintiffs included Jack Doe, a student at a public high school, who brought suit by and through his parents as next friends, and Andrea Lafferty, a citizen, taxpayer, and resident of Fairfax County. Jack Doe’s parents were citizens, taxpayers, and residents of Fairfax County. The Board filed a motion to dismiss and demurrer, arguing that Plaintiffs lacked standing. The circuit court dismissed without leave to amend, concluding (1) Andrea Lafferty and the Does individually lacked taxpayer standing, and (2) Jack Doe lacked standing because his disappointment with or anxiety or confusion over the school board’s action did not constitute a case or controversy or an adjudication of a right. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the parties failed to allege an actual controversy sufficient to bring a declaratory judgment, and therefore, they likewise may not recover the injunctive relief requested therein. View "Lafferty v. School Board of Fairfax County" on Justia Law

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In 1992, Plaintiff was convicted of a felony drug offense. In 2006, Plaintiff applied to the Fairfax County School Board for a teaching position and disclosed her prior conviction on her application. The Board subsequently hired Plaintiff as a special education teacher. In 2012, the school system’s Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources determined that, pursuant to Va. Code 22.1-296.1(A), Plaintiff’s 2006 hiring had been in error because her conviction made her ineligible for employment by the Board. The Board subsequently filed a complaint seeking a declaratory judgment that section 22.1-296.1(A) made Plaintiff ineligible for hire. The circuit court entered an order declaring that the Board lacked authority to hire Plaintiff under section 22.1-296.1(A). The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the Board lacked authority to make the contract, and therefore, the contract was void ab initio. View "Butler v. Fairfax County School Board" on Justia Law