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Teacher Fired, Became Lawyer To Sue School, Won Case & Got Teaching Job Back After 15 Years

Teacher became a lawyer to sue his school after he was fired

Since ancient times, teachers have been held in high regard in Vietnam. For many people in the occupation, it’s more than a job. It’s a noble calling – a privilege – to guide and nurture a new generation.

Therefore, one teacher has gone above and beyond to get his job back after he was fired. Believing his school’s decision to fire him was unjust, he became a lawyer to sue them, and finally won the case after 15 years.

Read on for his incredible journey.

He hit a student for their bad attitude and was fired

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Mr. Lê Cao Tánh
Image credit: Kiến Thức

As Lao Động reported, in 2006, Mr. Lê Cao Tánh, then a teacher at Nguyễn Du High School in Đà Lạt City, spotted a student cursing and chastised the student. In return, the student insulted him.

In his anger, Mr. Tánh hit the student, causing a nosebleed. Nguyễn Du High School, as quoted by Pháp Luật Online, deemed his action as “going against educational purposes and damaging to the school’s reputation” and saw it fit to fire him.

On the other hand, Mr. Tánh admitted to his wrongdoing, but did not think it warranted the termination of his contract. “I realize my action was ill-advised, but it is against the law for the school to fire me,” he told Lao Động.

As such, Mr. Tánh sued the school, asking them to take back the decision.

And thus began a long legal journey that’d change his life.

He became a lawyer to sue the school to get his job as a teacher back

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He became a lawyer to pursue his case

Image credit: Lao Động

Between 2007 to 2011, Mr. Tánh’s plea was rejected by the People’s Court of Đà Lạt, and then the People’s Court of Lâm Đồng Province.

Unrelenting, he studied law to continue pursuing the case, going so far as to become an official lawyer in 2010.

All his effort didn’t go to waste, as in 2011, the Supreme People’s Court of Vietnam dismissed the previous judgements and wanted the case revisited in Mr. Tánh’s favor.

In 2013, the People’s Court of Đà Lạt accepted Mr. Tánh’s request, and decided that Nguyễn Du High School must take him back as a teacher. However, the school objected, dragging the case further.

It wasn’t until June 2021 that the final decision was made. According to this, Nguyễn Du High School – which has now become Nguyễn Du Secondary School – must restore Mr. Tánh to his teaching position and compensate him an amount of VND614.8 million (~USD26,700).

The final judgement marked an end to Mr. Tánh’s 15-year-long journey to find his way back to being a teacher.

“If the school carries out the court’s judgement responsibly, I’ll go back to teaching. I’ll temporarily halt my career as a lawyer, and if I have free time, I’ll offer legal defenses for disadvantaged people,” Mr. Tánh told Pháp Luật Online.

Let’s hope he’ll be a good teacher for generations of students to come

Both sides of this legal case no doubt have their arguments, but after such a long time, we trust that the court has considered every scenario to come to the most reasonable judgment.

In any case, Mr. Tánh’s unrelenting effort to earn back his teaching job is commendable. Let’s hope he can channel such intense passion to provide knowledge and guidance to many young minds out there.

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Cover image adapted from Lao Động and Kiến Thức

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