Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Horton v. Board of Education of Sherburne-Earlville Central School District

United States District Court, N.D. New York

April 21, 2017

SCHUYLER HORTON, Plaintiff,
v.
BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE SHERBURNE-EARLVILLE CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT; ERIC A. SCHNABL, Superintendent of Schools of the Sherburne-Earlville Central School; and SUSAN T. WESTLING, Defendants.

          O'HARA, O'CONNELL & CIOTOLI, LLP Attorneys for Plaintiff.

          OFFICE OF FRANK W. MILLER Attorneys for Defendant Board of Education and Eric A. Schnabl.

          HANCOCK & ESTABROOK, LLP Attorneys for Defendant Susan T. Westling.

          OF COUNSEL: STEPHEN CIOTOLI, ESQ. FRANK W. MILLER, ESQ. CHRISTOPHER M. MILITELLO, ESQ. WHITNEY M. KUMMEROW, ESQ.

          MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER

          MAE A. D'AGOSTINO, U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff commenced this action on January 16, 2017, asserting two claims pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, arising out of a student disciplinary proceeding that occurred while Plaintiff was a student of the Sherburne-Earlville Central School District (the "District") during the 2014-2015 school year. See Dkt. No. 1. The complaint alleges that Plaintiff was deprived substantive and procedural due process by the imposition of an out of school suspension after Plaintiff was found in a superintendent's hearing held pursuant to New York Education Law § 3214 to have committed acts that violated the District's student code of conduct. Plaintiff alleges that he was deprived of his property interest in receiving his education without due process. Plaintiff also contends that he was deprived of his liberty interest in his good name and reputation by wrongfully suspending him from school without due process. Finally, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants' conduct resulted in a violation of his substantive due process rights.

         On March 9, 2017, Defendants Board of Education of Sherburne-Earlville Central School District and Eric A. Schnabl, as Superintendent of Schools, ("Defendants") moved pursuant to Rule 12(c) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for dismissal of the complaint in its entirety. See Dkt. No. 15.[1] After the motion was fully briefed, on April 20, 2017, the Court held oral argument. As set forth below, Defendant Schnabl and the Board of Education's motion for judgment on the pleadings is granted and they are dismissed from this action.

         II. BACKGROUND

         According to the complaint, Plaintiff was a student of the District who was suspended from school through the remainder of the 2014-2015 school year. See Dkt. No. 1-8 at ¶ 8. Plaintiff's suspension was initially imposed following a hearing held pursuant to New York Education Law § 3214 on November 13, 2014, at which Defendant Susan Westling, Esq., presided as hearing officer. See Id. at ¶¶ 11-21. Upon receiving notice of Defendant Schnabl's decision to suspend Plaintiff after the November 13 hearing, Plaintiff requested that the hearing be reopened to consider additional evidence. See Id. at ¶¶ 20-23. The District granted Plaintiff's request and a second day of testimony was held on January 27, 2015 during which additional evidence was entered into evidence and Plaintiff, who was represented by counsel, was provided the opportunity to testify in his defense. See Id. After the rehearing, Defendant Westling issued supplemental findings of fact and recommendations and ultimately confirmed the findings and penalty recommended after the November hearing. Defendant Schnabl accepted Defendant Westling's recommendations and confirmed the suspension by letter dated January 29, 2015. See Id. at ¶ 22.

         Thereafter, Plaintiff appealed Defendant Schnabl's decision to the Board of Education, which heard the appeal on February 9, 2015. See Id. at ¶ 24. The Board upheld the suspension to the end of the school year. See id.

         On February 16, 2015, Plaintiff appealed these adverse decisions to the New York State Commissioner of Education ("Commissioner"). See Dkt. No. 15-5 at 1-19. On October 5, 2015, Plaintiff sent a letter to the Commissioner indicating that, since Plaintiff graduated in June of 2015, the appeal is now moot. See Dkt. No. 22 at 19. As such, Plaintiff indicated that he wished to "withdraw this appeal, without prejudice, and [would] proceed in Federal Court where his constitutional claims may be heard." Id. In a letter dated October 8, 2015, the Commissioner accepted Plaintiff's request to discontinue his appeal. See Id. at 22.

         On January 16, 2017, Plaintiff commenced this action alleging procedural and substantive due process violations. See Dkt. No. 1. Currently before the Court is Defendant Schnabl's ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.