Successful representation of a school district faced with a Pennsylvania Sunshine Act Claim
The plaintiff, a suspended high school principal, claimed that the Pennsylvania Sunshine Act had been violated when the doors to the administration building had been locked at the start of the first day of her termination hearing. The court considered the issues of whether a plaintiff is denied a right under the Pennsylvania School Code when access to the hearing room by the public is barred, and whether a public hearing qualifies as “official action” within the meaning of the Sunshine Act. The court found that the public hearing required by the school code is not concurrently a “meeting” within the meaning of the Sunshine Act and subject to its provisions. Accordingly, the court granted summary judgment in favor of the school district.