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Teachers File Lawsuit Against Local Fashion Institute

Teachers file suit against area fashion school, which has a campus in Orange County. Where you a student? What was your experience?

A school that calls itself the first fashion college of its kind on the West Coast is being sued by current and former teachers who allege they are owed money for overtime and business expenses.

In the proposed class action lawsuit filed Tuesday against Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in Los Angeles Superior Court , lead plaintiff Amanda Ferguson seeks compensation on her own behalf and that of other teachers employed by FIDM within four years of the filing.

An FIDM representative did not immediately respond to email seeking comment.

According to the suit, a "subclass" of teachers at FIDM worked more than eight hours daily and 40 hours a week and also were not reimbursed for business costs, including travel expenses.

Ferguson was fired without being paid all wages owed her at the time she left, the complaint states.

"FIDM had knowledge of this practice and affirmatively permitted and encouraged it to occur," the suit states.

FIDM was founded in Los Angeles in 1969 and was the first fashion college of its kind on the West Coast, according to the school's website.

The school has business relationships with such companies as Smashbox, Guess? Inc. and NBC Universal, while its advisory board includes Tim Gunn, Diane von Furstenberg, Emanuel Ungaro and Fred Segal, according to the FIDM website.

Along with its downtown Los Angeles campus, FIDM has schools in Irvine, San Diego and San Francisco.

-- City News Service

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