- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 25, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio school board must release the names of replacement teachers brought in during a 2013 strike, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday as it rejected arguments that making the names public could endanger the teachers.

The decision upheld a lower court ruling that ordered the names released to the president of the Cleveland Teachers Union.

The Supreme Court also granted teachers’ union president David Quolke $7,972 in attorneys’ fees and costs.

The Strongsville city schools strike, which ended in April 2013 after eight weeks, was primarily over salary and working conditions in the district of about 6,200 students.

During the strike, the Strongsville school board reasonably concluded that releasing the names and other personal information like addresses and phone numbers could expose the replacement teachers to harm, the Supreme Court said.

The teachers were jeered and sworn at, received nasty notes in their classrooms and were criticized as “scabs” in leaflets, according to the court.

In addition, a van carrying replacement strikers was cut off and an object was thrown through the windshield of a replacement teacher’s car, the court said.

With the strike concluded, however, “because the board had presented little or no evidence that once the strike was over, there was any remaining threat to the replacement teachers,” the Supreme Court said in an opinion not signed by any specific justice and upholding an Eighth Ohio District Court of Appeals decision.

Releasing the names violates the replacement teachers’ constitutional privacy rights, Justices Terrence O’Donnell and Judith Lanzinger wrote in their dissents.

Providing the names “fails to take into account the nature of the animosity that exists between the former strikers and their replacements and may expose the replacement teachers to a substantial risk of serious bodily harm,” O’Donnell wrote.


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