United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division
PEREZ-MONTES MAG. JUDGE.
DRELL, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT.
the court is a motion for summary judgment (Doc. 18) filed on
behalf of defendant, Concordia Parish School Board
("Concordia"), seeking dismissal of all claims by
Plaintiff against it in the above-captioned suit. For the
reasons expressed herein, the court finds that
Concordia's motion should be GRANTED and, accordingly,
all claims by Plaintiff against Concordia should be denied
and dismissed with prejudice.
Bobbie Hinson ("Plaintiff or "Hinson"), was
employed by Concordia beginning in 1985, as an elementary
school teacher. (Doc. 20 at p. 1). Hinson attained promotions
to Assistant Principal and, in 2011, to Principal of Ferriday
Lower Elementary ("FLE"). (Id.) Plaintiff
retired from her position as Principal at FLE in June of
2015. (Id. at p. 7).
Hinson filed a charge of disability discrimination with the
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
("EEOC"). (Doc. 1 at ¶ V). Hinson received
"Notice of Right to Sue" from the EEOC on or about
May 23, 2016 and filed the instant suit on July 8, 2016.
(Id.) Plaintiff asserts that she gave the requisite
30-day notice to Concordia of her intent to sue as required
under LSA-R.S. 23:303(C). (Id.).
complaint asserts disparate treatment claims under the
Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") (42 U.S.C.
§§ 12102, et seq) and the Louisiana
Employment Discrimination Law ("LEDL") (La. R.S.
§§ 23:301, et seq). Plaintiffs claims are
based upon allegations that, though her employer knew that
she suffered from a disability under applicable law, a
condition affecting her left foot, she was constructively
discharged in violation of the ADA and LEDL. Specifically,
Plaintiff alleges that she was offered an early retirement
after 29 years of employment and when she declined such
offer, she was informed that she would be transferred to a
less-desirable, more physically-demanding school for the
upcoming 2015-16 school year. (Doc. 1 at ¶¶ XVI -
XVII). Plaintiff claims that she met with her supervisor,
Superintendent Dr. Paul Nelson, and informed him that,
because of her disability, she was unable to fulfill the
duties of Principal at Ferriday Junior High
("FJH"), where she was to be transferred.
(Id. at ¶ XIX). According to Hinson, Dr. Nelson
disregarded her pleas to remain at FLE. (Id. at
¶¶ XIX - XX). In late May, 2015, Plaintiff
requested and was granted medical leave from June 1, 2015
until August, 2015, which Plaintiff supported by letter from
her physician, Dr. Dennis LaRavia. (Id. at
¶¶ XXI - XXII). Hinson avers that her repeated
requests to remain at FLE, where she was able to fulfill her
responsibilities with "reasonable accommodations,"
were denied and she was replaced as Principal by another
employee who was not disabled. (Id. at ¶ XXIV).
Concordia now moves for summary judgment on the basis that
Plaintiffs claims fail because she is unable to establish a
prima facie case under either the ADA or LEDL. (Doc. 18). We
analyze the arguments and evidence offered by the parties
"shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law."
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A dispute of material fact is genuine if
the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a
verdict for the nonmoving party. See Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). "We consider
all evidence 'in the light most favorable to the party
resisting the motion.'" Seacor Holdings, Inc. v.
Commonwealth Ins. Co., 635 F.3d 675, 680 quoting
Trevino v. Celanese Corp., 701 F.2d 397, 407 (5th
Cir. 1983). However, the non-moving party does not establish
a genuine dispute with '"some metaphysical doubt as
to the material facts,' by 'conclusory
allegations,' by 'unsubstantiated assertions,' or
by only a 'scintilla' of evidence." Little
v. Liquid Air Corp., 37 F.3d 1069, 1075 (5th Cir. 1994)
(citations omitted). It is important to note that the
standard for a summary judgment is two-fold: (1) there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact, and (2) the movant
is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.
claims arise under the ADA and its Louisiana law counterpart,
the LEDL. Claims under both statutes are analyzed using the
framework of federal employment discrimination jurisprudence.
Bell v. Hercules Liftboat Co., LLC, 524 Fed.Appx. 64
(5th Cir. 2013); Baker v. FedEx Ground Package
System, Inc., 278 Fed.Appx. 322 (5th Cir.
2008) citing Smith v. Amedisys, Inc., 298 F.3d 434,
448 (5th Cir. 2002).
provides protection against discrimination in employment
because of disability for qualified individuals. 42 U.S.C.
§ 12112. As a threshold requirement, the Plaintiff must
show that she is disabled within the meaning of the ADA,
which defines "disability" as "a physical or
mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of
the major life activities of such individual." Plaintiff
may, alternatively, show that she established a record of her
alleged impairment or that she was regarded as having such