Campus Due Process Litigation Tracker

Doe v. California Institute of Technology, No. 2:18-cv-09178 (C.D. Cal. Apr. 30, 2019)

School type: Private
State: California
Federal Circuit: Ninth
Decision primarily favorable to: Student
Stage of litigation: Motion to dismiss
Keywords: Due process, State action

The court denied Cal Tech’s motion to dismiss on the basis of failure to exhaust judicial remedies, and ordered additional briefing on the question of whether a Cal Tech administrator was a state actor for the purposes of the Plaintiff’s §1983 due process claims against her:

The Court believes that further briefing on this specific issue will assist the Court in understanding the parties’ respective legal positions regarding the tests for state action articulated above. Specifically, the Court is unclear as to the application of the Ninth Circuit’s decision and analysis in Caviness v. Horizon Community Learning Center, Inc., 590 F.3d 806 (9th Cir. 2010), in which the Ninth Circuit appears to establish that a private school may become a state actor if the state “shows interest” in the school’s disciplinary proceedings for sexual misconduct, including whether the state issued regulations containing “substantive standards or procedural guidelines that ‘could have compelled or influenced’” the private school’s decisions.

The case subsequently settled, but is notable for the court’s discussion of the state-action issue.