A high school teacher’s complaints against his high school principal did not qualify as protected speech under the First Amendment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled Friday in an opinion regarding retaliation claims in the context of public employment.

The ruling, from a three-judge panel of the Manhattan-based appeals court, upheld a lower court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Manuel Ureña, the former principal of High School of Art and Design in Manhattan, and the New York City Department of Education.

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