School employee wins case over annual renewal language in contract
Jodie Journey sued the Beecher Community School District after it attempted to terminate her employment. The parties had signed a one-year contract that was automatically renewed, year-to-year, unless notice of non-renewal was served. The School served such a notice in the spring of 2006, but rescinded that decision and employed Journey as a health coordinator for 2007. In the summer of 2007, it did not serve a notice of non-renewal, but refused to employ Journey on the basis that it was changing its "Early Childhood Program," eliminating her position, and taking applications for a new position termed a Team Leader.
The Court held that under existing precedent and statutory interpretation, the school was obligated to send a new notice of non-renewal after voiding the initial notice and re-employing Journey for the 2006-2007 school year.