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Case Name J.P. v. Educational Testing Services ED-CA-0037
Docket / Court 2:20-cv-04502 ( C.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Education
Special Collection COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Case Summary
COVID-19 summary: This is a class-action complaint brought by four parents and a public charity against the College Entrance Examination Board and Education Testing Services for breach of contract on behalf of all students registered to take at-home Advanced Placement (AP) exams, for the defendant� ... read more >
COVID-19 summary: This is a class-action complaint brought by four parents and a public charity against the College Entrance Examination Board and Education Testing Services for breach of contract on behalf of all students registered to take at-home Advanced Placement (AP) exams, for the defendant’s failure to administer its AP exams without prejudice. The suit was filed after students experienced a series of technical difficulties with their AP exams, administered at home by the defendant due to COVID-19. The plaintiffs alleged that the defendant breached contract by failing to ensure a fair and equitable testing opportunity and that the defendant knowingly discriminated against under-resourced and disabled students, and students in remote locations. The plaintiffs sought injunctive relief, compensatory damages exceeding $500 million, and punitive damages. No outcome yet.


In March 2020, the College Board moved AP exams to be administered at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the exams, counselors and educators communicated concerns that the at-home exams were not fair to students who had no access to a computer, internet, or quiet workspaces, under-resourced students, and students requiring accommodations. The plaintiffs claimed that prior to the exams, the defendants acknowledged that the “digital divide” could prevent low-income and rural students from participating, however, they did not change their policies to address the issues. After three days of at-home exams, the defendant announced that there were failures in uploading the exams due to technical difficulties. According to reports, anywhere between 5% to 20% of examinees were unable to submit their responses during the first three days of exams. The plaintiffs noted that many students relied on AP exam scores for the financial benefits of college placement and credit.

On May 19, 2020, four parents and the National Center for Fair & Open Testing brought suit against the College Entrance Examination Board and Education Testing Services on behalf of their minor children and all other similarly situated students registered to take at-home Advancement Placement (AP) exams. The plaintiffs alleged that the defendants breached their implied contract by failing to ensure a fair and equitable testing opportunity and by failing to prevent anyone from gaining an unfair advantage. The plaintiffs also alleged that the defendants knowingly discriminated against under-resourced students, disabled students, and students in remote locations in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Unruh Act, and the Rehabilitation Act. They further alleged unfair competition, false advertisement, and negligence. Filed in the District Court of the Central District of California, the plaintiffs sought injunctive relief requiring the College Board to accept any test answers by timestamp, photo, and email, as well as compensatory damages exceeding $500 million. The plaintiffs also sought punitive damages, pre- and post-judgment interests and costs. The plaintiffs also sought class certification and a jury trial. The plaintiffs were represented by the Miller Advocacy group and private attorneys. The case was assigned to District Judge Philip S. Guitierrez and Magistrate Judge Pedro V. Castillo.

The plaintiffs filed an amended complaint on June 22, 2020. The case is ongoing.

Averyn Lee - 07/13/2020


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Disability
disability, unspecified
General
Screen readers and similar accessibility devices
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Non-government for profit
Causes of Action Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Defendant(s) Education Testing Services
the College Entrance Examination Board
Plaintiff Description Four parents and a public charity on behalf of all students registered to take at-home AP exams.
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filed 05/19/2020
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
Docket(s)
2:20-cv-04502-PSG-PVC (C.D. Cal.)
ED-CA-0037-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/22/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Nationwide and California Class Action Complaint [ECF# 1]
ED-CA-0037-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/19/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Nationwide and California Class Action First Amended Complaint & Demand for Jury Trial [ECF# 15]
ED-CA-0037-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/22/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Castillo, Pedro V. Court not on record [Magistrate] show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-9000
Gutierrez, Philip S. (C.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Baker, Phillip A. (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-0001 | ED-CA-0037-0002 | ED-CA-0037-9000
Hoffman, Christina N (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-0001 | ED-CA-0037-0002 | ED-CA-0037-9000
Lowe, Derrick S. (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-0002
Miller, Marci Lerner (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-0001 | ED-CA-0037-0002 | ED-CA-0037-9000
Stone, Jennifer (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-0001 | ED-CA-0037-0002 | ED-CA-0037-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Benedetto, Matthew D. (California) show/hide docs
ED-CA-0037-9000

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