FELICIA PUGLIESE VS. STATE-OPERATED SCHOOL DISTRICT OF THE CITY OF NEWARK, ESSEX COUNTY EDGARD CHAVEZ VS. STATE-OPERATED SCHOOL DISTRICT OF THE CITY OF NEWARK, ESSEX COUNTY (COMMISSIONER OF EDUCATION)(CONSOLIDATED) (A-3689-15T1/A-5527-15T1)
In Pugliese v. State-Operated School District of City of Newark, 440 N.J. Super. 501 (App. Div. 2015), the court vacated and remanded for reconsideration anew an arbitrator's award sustaining tenure charges against appellants. In this appeal, the court had to construe N.J.S.A. 18A:6-14 and determine what impact its decision to remand had on the suspended educators' entitlement to back pay while the remand was pending. The statute provides for an educator's suspension without pay for 120 days or until the issuance of a final determination of the disputed tenure charges, whichever is sooner. If the matter is not resolved within 120 days, compensation must resume until a determination is reached. In this case, the court concluded that the entitlement to compensation after 120 days continues under the statute despite the fact there was an initial award terminating employment that was vacated and remanded, without a dismissal of the tenure charges.