United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Western Division
BONNIE M. McGRIFF, Plaintiff,
BEAVERCREEK CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT, Defendant.
DECISION AND ENTRY OVERRULING DEFENDANT BEAVERCREEK
CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT BOARD OF EDUCATION'S MOTION TO
DISMISS (DOC. #9).
H. RICE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Beavercreek City School District Board of Education
("Beavercreek"), has filed a Motion to Dismiss the
Amended Complaint, Doc. #9, of Plaintiff, Bonnie M. McGriff
("McGriff" or "Plaintiff"). McGriff has
filed a response opposing Beavercreek's 12(b)(6) motion
to dismiss, Doc. #10. Beavercreek has filed a reply, Doc. #11.
For the reasons set forth below, Beavercreek's motion is
Factual Background and Procedural History
to McGriffs Amended Complaint, she is a fifty-four-year old
Caucasian female with an alleged fifty percent hearing
deficiency that requires her to wear hearing aids. Doc. #7,
PAGEID#22. McGriff contends her hearing loss began at age
thirty-one and stems from nerve damage. Doc. #7, PAGEID#21.
Additionally, McGriff contends that she suffers from
fibromyalgia and alleges that this condition can be impacted
when she experiences stress associated with her hearing
issues. Doc. #7, PAGEID#22.
alleges that she has been employed as a teacher by
Beavercreek since July 1996 and currently remains employed by
Beavercreek. Id. She contends that she has taught
Spanish for more than thirty years, twenty-one years of which
were taught at Beavercreek. Doc. #7, PAGEID#23. McGriff has
alleged that prior to the 2017-2018 school year, she was
given a job transfer to teach only French. Id. She
claims that the last time she taught French was nearly twenty
years ago and that due to her hearing disability, it is very
difficult for her to teach French as compared to Spanish
because of the difference in the need for
"discriminating ears." Id. According to
the allegations in McGriff's Amended Complaint,
Beavercreek provided younger and non-disabled employees more
favorable teaching assignments than McGriff. Id. She
further contends that her reassignment has negatively
impacted her fibromyalgia. Id.
response to the reassignment to teach French and not Spanish,
McGriff filed a formal complaint of discrimination against
Beavercreek with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission. Doc. #7,
PAGEID#22. On August 15, 2018, McGriff received notice that
the complaint was dismissed and that she had the right to
file a civil action. Id. As a result, she filed this
action against Beavercreek and subsequently filed her Amended
Complaint, Doc. #7, on January 1, 2019.
Standard of Review
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a) provides that a complaint must
contain "a short and plain statement of the claim
showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." The
complaint must provide the defendant with "fair notice
of what the claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355
U.S. 41, 47 (1957)).
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) allows a party to move for
dismissal of a complaint on the basis that it "faii[s]
to state a claim upon which relief can be granted." The
moving party bears the burden of showing that the opposing
party has failed to adequately state a claim for relief.
DirecTV, Inc. v. Treesh, 487 F.3d 471, 476 (6th Cir.
2007) (citing Carver v. Bunch, 946 F.2d 451, 454-55
(6th Cir. 1991)). The purpose of a motion to dismiss under
Rule 12(b)(6) "is to allow a defendant to test whether,
as a matter of law, the plaintiff is entitled to legal relief
even if everything alleged in the complaint is true."
Mayer v. Mylod, 988 F.2d 635, 638 (6th Cir. 1993).
In ruling on a 12(b)(6) motion, a court must "construe
the complaint in the light most favorable to the plaintiff,
accept its allegations as true, and draw all reasonable
inferences in favor of the plaintiff." Handy-Clay v.
City of Memphis, 695 F.3d 531, 538 (6th Cir. 2012)
(quoting Treesh, 487 F.3d at 476).
to survive a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the
complaint must contain "enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face." Twombly,
550 U.S. at 570. Unless the facts alleged show that the
plaintiff's claim crosses "the line from conceivable
to plausible, [the] complaint must be dismissed."
Id. Although this standard does not require
"detailed factual allegations," it does require
more than "labels and conclusions" or "a
formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action." Id. at 555. "Rule 8 . . . does
not unlock the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed with
nothing more than conclusions." Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678-79 (2009). Legal conclusions
"must be supported by factual allegations" that
give rise to an inference that the defendant is, in fact,
liable for the misconduct alleged. Id. at 679.
Amended Complaint pleads two causes of action: age
discrimination and disability discrimination. Beavercreek
moves to dismiss both claims by first arguing that McGriff
failed to plead factual allegations as required by Bell
Atlantic v. Twombly and Ashcroft v. Iqbal.
Alternatively, Beavercreek argues that McGriff has failed to
plead an adverse employment action as well as a valid
disability. The Court will separately address each of
Beavercreek's arguments regarding these two claims.
Complaint Requirements under Twombly and
first argues that dismissal of the two counts in the Amended
Complaint is proper because McGriff has failed to comply with
the pleading requirements of Bell Atlantic v.
Twombly and Ashcroft v. Iqbal. "While a
complaint attacked by a Fed. R. of Civ. P, 12(b)(6) motion to
dismiss does not need detailed factual allegations," the
complaint is required to contain "more than labels and