Stephanie Davis, former Newark kindergarten teacher, awarded $15 million in lawsuit against public schools

Davis' attorneys argued that her day-to-day labor wore her down to the point that she could no longer work at all, much less as a school teacher. (3/23/14)

NEWARK - A former kindergarten teacher in Newark has won a $15 million lawsuit against Newark Public Schools.

Stephanie Davis, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1997, claimed the school system ignored her pleas for help as her condition worsened. 

Davis says she experienced pain, fatigue and problems with balance in recent years and formally asked for accommodations. She says she was forced to take on more work without assistance.

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After her 15-year career came to an end at 17th Street School, Davis filed a lawsuit claiming she was forced into an early retirement.

"It was hard to come to terms with because I'm not an old person. I had a lot of years ahead of me to work," Davis told News 12.

Davis' attorneys argued that her day-to-day labor wore her down to the point that she could no longer work at all, much less as a school teacher.

Newark Public Schools plans to appeal the decision, calling the $15 million judgment “grossly inflated.”

In a statement, the district says it "believes deeply in its obligation to provide needed accommodations to our employees with disabilities. Upon further review, we are confident the record will show that the laws were clearly followed and, at all times, provided Ms. Davis with reasonable support and respect."

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