LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The Clark County School District’s (CCSD) request for an injunction was denied in court after it filed a complaint to prevent the Clark County Education Association (CCEA) from going on strike.

On July 31, CCSD filed a complaint to prevent the CCEA from striking, stating in a release that the decision was made because of “CCEA’s threats” that the union would engage in “work actions” if a contract was not reached by Aug. 26.

In the state of Nevada, it is illegal for public-sector employees to go on strike.

On Aug. 21, CCEA filed an Anti-SLAPP Special Motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

On the morning of Aug. 22, CCEA and CCSD appeared in court, where the court dismissed CCSD’s filing.

“There is not enough at this stage, right now, for the court to say that unless enjoined, that a strike will occur,” Eighth Judicial District Court Judge Jessica Peterson said.

That decision is a setback for CCSD, which sought to use public statements by CCEA Executive Director John Vellardita made as threats to strike. The union’s attorney, Bradley Schrager, undercut that argument, telling the judge there is a difference between threatening to strike and actually striking.

“What conduct are you stopping? You’re stopping someone from obeying the law that they’re obeying now anyway? There is no record here that my clients have broken the law,” Schrager argued.

If teachers were to strike, CCEA could face $50,000 per day in fines, plus $1,000 a day for union officers and employees.

What’s causing the impasse between CCEA and CCSD? Teacher pay.

The teachers union wants a 10% increase the first year, and 8% the following year. CCSD is offering 8.5% the first year and 2% for the second year.

The CCEA will meet on Saturday and members will vote on what the next steps will be if a contract isn’t approved by then.

CCEA released the following statement in response to the dismissal:

The court saw through CCSD’s frivolous lawsuit and did not grant what they were requesting.
This is a victory for 18,000 educators and their first amendment rights. Educators will not be

We are determined to get a fair and long overdue contract. Hopefully Superintendent Jara and
the trustees smell the coffee and see that they should be putting their efforts into bargaining at
the negotiating table, and not manipulate the courts to force CCEA into a contract on CCSD’s
terms. CCEA awaits the trustees’ review on August 24th of our contract proposal. Our members
will then assemble on August 26th to review the trustees’ response and decide next steps.

On August 21st, CCEA filed an Anti-SLAPP lawsuit against CCSD. Today’s ruling confirmed it
was a meritless lawsuit that was politically driven to intimidate and coerce educators into
accepting a contract on Jara’s terms as well as his efforts to decertify CCEA as the teachers
union. Make no mistake about it, we will continue to pursue this matter in court.

– CCEA statement

CCSD’s response to the dismissal is below.

While we are disappointed that an injunction was not granted, we are pleased that the court took CCEA’s threats seriously and warned CCEA that with any additional evidence of coordinated work stoppages, slowdowns, or interruption of operations, the parties will return to the court with a day’s notice. Despite the baffling statement issued by CCEA, which does not reflect what truly happened in the proceeding today, the District remains committed to ensuring that the interests of students, parents, and the District’s overall operations are not disrupted. 

As we’ve said consistently, negotiations occur and will continue at the bargaining table, not in public, and the tactics by the CCEA leadership do not move us any closer to an agreement. CCEA leadership must bargain in good faith if they hope to reach a deal on behalf of our hardworking and deserving teachers. CCSD is ready to continue bargaining and awaits new dates from CCEA to get to the bargaining table so our teachers can receive the money they deserve.

CCSD statement