Park City School District And Nurse Reach Settlement Agreement

Apr 24, 2019

Credit Summit County

The Park City School District has settled the lawsuit filed against it by Nicole Kennedy, who went to court about two-and-a-half years ago, saying that her contract as a nurse with the Park City schools was not renewed after she criticized the district’s medical policies.

Neither side is disclosing any details on the resolution, but they did say Kennedy is returning to her old job this fall.

The Park City School board announced at its April 16th meeting that it had approved a settlement.

Kennedy filed a lawsuit in Third District Court in October of 2016, alleging the District had violated the state’s Whistleblower Law. She said she face retaliation because she raised concerns, in particular, that the District lacked a policy for students with diabetes. She had also supported the discrimination complaint of a parent with a diabetic student.

The suit named then-Superintendent Ember Conley, Associate Superintendent Tom Van Gorder—both of whom have since departed—and current Director of Human Resources Tim McConnell.

The District, in its defense, alleged that Kennedy was disruptive, behaved in a hostile manner to other nurses, and made unsubstantiated sensational complaints.

The District’s counsel was Alain Balmanno from the state Attorney General’s office, who said Kennedy will be working under her old job title, as a school nurse, and as a regular, full-time employee.

He said both sides wanted to resolve the litigation.

“There were five causes of action, you can read that in the complaint. The court dismissed two of them based on our motion for summary judgment. The contract claims were dismissed, the other claims were subject to going forward with trial. Both bodies felt it would be best if it was not a trial. This is a case that has, I think, caught the attention and emotions of the County up there. I think both parties felt that it would be in everybody's interest to come to some kind of a settlement, so that that's what they did.”

Kennedy wrote to us that she is under a gag order but did say, “I am so excited to be returning to the district. It was my favorite job and I can’t wait to work with the students of Park City again.”