NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) — It’s been six years since Dr. Euna McGruder was hired and then let go by Metro Nashville Public Schools. She believes it was because of her investigation into discrimination complaints at one area school.
On Monday, the court confirmed it, too.
“I am ecstatic with how things turned out. I have just a belief in our Justice System and what that means for not only myself but for the greater good of America,” Dr. McGruder said.
Dr. McGruder is feeling grateful after winning her lawsuit against Metro Schools.
But that ‘W’ didn’t come without a long battle.
Dr. McGruder was hired on during the 2015-2016 school year as Executive Officer for Priority Schools, a role that aims to help the lowest performing schools, including at the time, Madison Middle.
Her lawsuit centered around her being let go after investigating reports of discrimination and hostile work environment complaints that were brought to her attention at Madison Middle.
“When you find that something is going wrong and you know that is blatantly discriminatory or that marginalizes people in a way that they cannot be productive in their future—you say so,” Dr. McGruder said.
Soon after presenting complaints to the district’s attention, she was told they were ‘going in a different direction.’
FOX 17 News reached out to Metro Schools for their take on Monday’s ruling and ways to prevent things like this in the future. The district sent the following statement:
“The case in question involves a unique set of circumstances in the 2015-16 school year, several years prior to Dr. Battle’s leadership as Director of Schools, and with employees who are no longer working for the district. The claim brought before the jury is that the former employee’s contract was non-renewed due to an investigation of employment-related concerns (not student discipline concerns) at one particular school. We do not believe that the issues in this trial involve systemic problems within the district, and Dr. Battle and the leadership at MNPS are committed to a supportive, inclusive environment for students, staff, and families.” – Sean Braisted, MNPS
Her attorney, Brian Winfrey, says this was a retaliation case and it’s result means she has her good name back.”We believe that we didn’t have any other opportunity to resolve this, so we just kept fighting and pushing because we knew that Dr. McGruder had been done wrong,” Brian Winfrey said.
For Dr. McGruder, this case boils down to more than just her name.
“I don’t even want to start crying but I am excited. First, I know that this case is bigger than me. It really is about people being treated fairly,” Dr. McGruder said.