Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Doe v. Eanes Independent School District

United States District Court, W.D. Texas, Austin Division

November 4, 2019

JANE EANESISD-VK DOE
v.
EANES INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION OF THE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

          SUSAN HIGHTOWER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         TO: THE HONORABLE LEE YEAKEL UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Before this Court are Defendant EISD's Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss, filed on June 13, 2019 (Dkt. No. 4); EISD's Motion to Require Plaintiff to Proceed in her Real Name, filed on June 18, 2019 (Dkt. No. 6); and the parties' respective responses and replies. On August 5, 2019, the District Court referred the above motions to the undersigned Magistrate Judge for Report and Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1), Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72, and Rule 1 of Appendix C of the Local Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff Kristen Marie Vengler, formerly referred to in this action as Jane Doe (“Plaintiff”), is an educator over the age of forty, employed under a written contract (“Contract”) with Defendant Eanes Independent School District (“EISD”).

         Plaintiff's Complaint initially stated that she intended to proceed anonymously. Dkt. No. 1 at ¶ 4. In response to EISD's Motion to Require Plaintiff to Proceed in her Real Name (Dkt. No. 6), Plaintiff stated that she no longer asserts any objection to using her true name. Dkt. No. 11 at ¶ 2. Plaintiff requested that the style of this cause be amended to incorporate her name, Kristen Marie Vengler. Id. at ¶ 4. Accordingly, the Court RECOMMENDS that Defendant's Motion to Require Plaintiff to Proceed in her Real Name be DISMISSED AS MOOT and Plaintiff's true name substituted in the style in this case.

         Plaintiff's Complaint alleges that in retaliation for her “vocal criticism” of poor working conditions and pay, EISD “began concocting and implementing various plans and schemes designed to try and coerce [Plaintiff] into resigning as an employee from Eanes ISD.” Dkt. No. 1 at ¶¶ 14-16. Plaintiff alleges that EISD's “ongoing scheming” to get her to resign included attempting to “push her out based on false and ridiculous allegations” that Plaintiff had touched a student inappropriately, though not sexually. Id. at ¶ 18. Plaintiff also alleges that EISD attempted to non-renew Plaintiff's Contract, but the Board of Trustees (“Board”) for EISD “rejected” the effort. Id. at ¶ 19. In addition, Plaintiff avers that EISD intentionally reassigned her from her position at a middle school to a high school position, which put her “physically in harm's way.” Id. at ¶ 20. According to Plaintiff, the reassignment to the high school position resulted in her “being physically impacted to the point that [Plaintiff] became physically and emotionally injured.” Id. at ¶¶ 20-21. When Plaintiff tried to present her grievances regarding EISD's actions to the Board, she claims EISD “took all steps necessary” to deny her that right. Id. at ¶ 23. Plaintiff also complains that EISD engaged in “cavalier and improper treatment” of her and her alleged disabilities[1] as part of its effort to push Plaintiff “to the breaking point” in hopes that she would resign. Id. at ¶¶ 21, 24.

         Based on the alleged facts above, Plaintiff filed this lawsuit against EISD, asserting the following claims: (1) age discrimination, pursuant to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”); (2) discrimination under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”); (3) violations under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, based on the above statutes and violations of her First and Fourteenth Amendment rights; and (4) violations of the Texas Constitution. Id. at ¶ 3.[2]

         Plaintiff alleges that she was physically, emotionally, and economically harmed as a result of EISD's actions. Id. at ¶ 26. Plaintiff seeks $4 million in damages, post judgment interest, attorneys' fees, and costs. Id. at ¶¶ 73-79. Plaintiff further seeks equitable relief, including an order that EISD cease and desist from violating her civil rights and expunge from its files all materials reflecting negatively on Plaintiff. Id. at ¶¶ 66, 72.

         On June 13, 2019, EISD filed the instant Motion to Dismiss, arguing that Plaintiff's claims should be dismissed under Rule 12(b)(6) for failure to state a cause of action. Dkt. No. 4.

         II. LEGAL STANDARD

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) allows a party to move to dismiss an action for failure to state a claim on which relief can be granted. In deciding a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, the court “accepts all well-pleaded facts as true, viewing them in the light most favorable to the [nonmovant].” In re Katrina Canal Breaches Litig., 495 F.3d 191, 205 (5th Cir. 2007) (internal quotation marks omitted). The Supreme Court has explained that a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter “to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A claim has facial plausibility when the [nonmovant] pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the [movant] is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft, 556 U.S. at 678.

While a complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss does not need detailed factual allegations, a plaintiff's obligation to provide the grounds of his entitle[ment] to relief requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do. Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level . . . .”

Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).

         When considering a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, courts do not look beyond the face of the pleadings or refer to extrinsic evidence. See Spivey v. Robertson, 197 F.3d 772, 774 (5th Cir. 1999). The court's review is limited to the complaint, any documents attached to the complaint, and any documents attached to the motion to dismiss that are central to the claim and referenced by the complaint. Lone Star Fund V (U.S.), L.P. v. Barclays Bank PLC, 594 F.3d 383, 387 (5th Cir. 2010).

         III. ANALYSIS

         EISD's Motion to Dismiss argues the ADEA and ADA claims should be dismissed because Plaintiff failed to exhaust her administrative remedies before filing suit. EISD further argues that Plaintiff's § 1983 claims should be dismissed because Plaintiff failed to plead any violation of her constitutional rights and did not allege facts to support municipal liability. Finally, EISD argues that because Plaintiff has not adequately pled the requisite elements of her claims under the Texas Constitution, those claims should be dismissed as well.

         A. ADEA Claim

         Plaintiff alleges that EISD committed “Civil Rights Violations” against her “in part, because Plaintiff was over the age of forty, ” thus violating the ADEA. Dkt. No. 1 at ¶ 41. EISD argues that Plaintiff's ADEA claim should be dismissed because ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.