Judge orders ex-principal of LEAD Academy back on payroll for now

Hearing held for former LEAD Academy principal

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Thursday was the first hearing for Dr. Nicole Ivey-Price, the former principal of Montgomery’s first charter school, LEAD Academy.

Ivey-Price was only on the job for a short time before LEAD Academy confirmed it was parting ways with her in late September. LEAD Academy made an official termination in a five-minute board meeting held on Oct. 2.

Thursday’s hearing was for Ivey-Price to be returned to payroll to avoid potentially irreparable damage that could come from her not having health insurance. She’s being represented by counsel with the Alabama Education Association, which says she is currently owed just over $11,000 in backpay.

Further, the AEA says if Ivey-Price continues to be denied pay and health insurance, that could lead to damages that money won’t be able to fix. It was revealed in court that LEAD Academy officials sent Ivey-Price paperwork regarding the continuation of her health insurance just hours before the 2 p.m. hearing.

“Judge [Jimmy] Pool granted our motion," said Ivey-Price’s attorney, Clint Daughtrey. "She will be returned to payroll subject to a preliminary injunction hearing next month. He has also ordered the parties to immediate mediation before retired Judge [Charles] Price.”

Ivey-Price’s attorney said since she will be returned to payroll, she is willing to do administrative work for LEAD Academy unless she is placed on official administrative paid leave.

The lawsuit against LEAD Academy accuses the school of multiple counts of fraud, breach of contract, retaliation, and denial of due process of law regarding Ivey-Price’s termination.

Officials from LEAD Academy were represented by an attorney who appeared in court via a phone call. We have reached out to that attorney for comment but have yet to hear back.

The school has previously released a statement accusing Ivey-Price of providing false and misleading information to try and salvage her reputation.

The next hearing on this case is schedule for Dec. 17.

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