La Joya ISD Lawsuit Settled in $460K Payout

Posted: Updated: Feb 13, 2018 12:02 AM

LA JOYA – A settlement ended a lawsuit between a Rio Grande Valley school district and former employees.

The La Joya Independent School District paid a $460,000 settlement. 

The decision of the suit was appealed and landed in the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

It turns out if the district waited for the court’s decision, they might not have had to pay a cent. That lawsuit was originally filed in district court back in 2014.

According to court documents, 29 former and, at the time, current employees alleged they were fired, demoted or reassigned due to their political affiliations.

The district court judge dismissed the case.

They appealed the case to the 5th Circuit Court. However, early last year while waiting for the court’s decision, district officials decided to settle with the 29 plaintiffs.

In November, the court of appeals ruled to uphold the original dismissal.

Now, what that means is if the plaintiffs didn’t appeal the 5th Circuit Court’s decision, the district wouldn’t have had to pay the settlement.

We went to La Joya ISD’s school board meeting to find out why they decided to settle before the ruling.

The district’s attorney said they cannot comment due to a clause in the settlement.

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