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j0422813.jpgIn Matter of Gomez v. New York City Dept. of Education , Francia Gomez's certification as a bus driver was revoked when she failed to appear for drug testing.

Gomez was advised that she had been randomly selected for a test on the same day she had a previously scheduled doctor's appointment. Gomez opted to forego the test, despite a warning that her lack of cooperation could result in "decertification."

Although Gomez's record was otherwise unblemished, and she submitted to a drug test the next day (with negative results), the New York County Supreme Court upheld the New York City Department of Education 's decision to permanently revoke her certification.

On appeal, the Appellate Division, First Department, reversed.

Random drug tests are governed by the Administrative Code of the City of New York which provides that anyone refusing to submit to the process may be suspended for a year. As the AD1 could find no basis for the DOE 's "zero tolerance" policy, Gomez's decertification was found to be "arbitrary and capricious as a matter of law."

Were it not for the AD1, Gomez would have been thrown under that bus.

j0284129.gifTo download a copy of the Appellate Division's decision, please use this link: Matter of Gomez v. New York City Dept. of Education