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Court denies restraining order to stop DPS sickouts; hearing set for Monday

Jan 21, 2016

Teachers and parents protested in Detroit as 88 DPS schools closed for teacher "sickouts" Wednesday.
Credit Kate Wells / Michigan Radio

The Detroit Public Schools has lost an initial bid to stop frustrated teachers from staging repeated sickout protests.

Angry about classroom conditions, low pay and Lansing’s inaction in the face of near-insolvency, DPS teachers staged their largest sickout yet Wednesday, closing 88 schools.

The district, headed by state-appointed emergency manager Darnell Earley, went to the Michigan Court of Claims to get a restraining order the same day.

Judge Cynthia Stephens has now denied that initial request.

But Stephens still needs to decide whether to grant the district’s request for a preliminary injunction – a more powerful and durable legal measure.

The district’s lawsuit claims the sickouts have adversely impacted students, deprived them of school-provided meals, and wasted taxpayer money.

Stephens set a hearing for Monday.