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Ohio teacher allowed to continue with claim of ADA violation

In Smith v. Perkins, a 71-year old teacher sued her school district after she was fired for "just cause."  Perkins was a type-2 diabetic who became insulin-injection dependant several years earlier.  Her annual reviews were excellent until 2008.  In the following year, however, she was written up several times for allegedly sleeping in class.  She maintained that the complaints related to hypoglycemic episodes that could be prevented or alleviated with minimal accommodation.  Some accomodations were attempted, however, she was written up several more times in succession and terminated.

An arbitrator reviewed the firing and determined that it was with "just cause."  Smith pursued an ADA claim, arguing that the School District violated the disability act by failing to make reasonable accommodation for her illness.  The Sixth Circuit ruled that it was too early to summarily dismiss her ADA claim, given that on their face, if given the proper weight, the facts of her complaint raised a valid cause of action to be tested by a jury.

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