YES!!! Court Victory for Encinitas Yoga Program

YES!!! Court Victory for Encinitas Yoga Program

Dear YES! Families:

Victory, at last…. Again!!  Today the Court of Appeal released its opinion in Sedlock v. Baird.  As expected, the opinion fully affirms the 2013 trial court ruling in favor of YES! and EUSD.  Simply put, the court confirmed that the EUSD yoga program is not religious and does not violate the Constitution.

The full Court ruling is available here.

Coast Law Group continues to represent YES! on a pro bono basis.  Lead trial attorney Dave Peck commented “This ruling is exactly what we expected. The EUSD yoga program has never been religious. Those who claim otherwise have a warped perspective and their own religious agenda. 99% of the community loves the program and students, teachers, parents and administrators consistently rave about it.  I’m pleased the Court again got it right and hope this is the end of the controversy.”

While the yoga opponents will have an opportunity to petition the California Supreme Court for a review of today’s decision, two strong rulings in our favor make further judicial review unlikely.

We hope you and your families are enjoying spring break – your students’ yoga program will be waiting when they return to school.

Thank you, as always, for your warm wishes and continual support.  Coast Law Group has been honored to represent you in this fight.

~ ~ ~

Want more?

Here’s a favorite post from California Appellate Report on the ruling: “I can think of a plethora of religiously-backed — but presently “secular” — parts of public schools that have a much deeper connection with religion than the challenged yoga program here.”

NBC 7 San Diego: New in Yoga Legal Battle: Appeals Court Rules in Favor of Encinitas School District

KPBS: Ruling: Yoga Can Continue In Encinitas Schools

10 News San Diego: Ruling: Yoga can continue in Encinitas schools

Fox 5 San Diego: Appeals court rules yoga can continue in Encinitas schools

U-T San Diego: Appeals court upholds school yoga

A brief excerpt summarizing the 37-page ruling is below:


Encinitas Yoga Appeal: Court of Appeal Oral Argument

Encinitas Yoga Appeal: Court of Appeal Oral Argument

Dear YES! Families –

Today was a big day for the EUSD yoga program.  Nearly two years after our victory in the trial court, this morning Sedlock v. Baird, et al. was called for argument in the Court of Appeal.  As expected, the debate was passionate.

Dean Broyles, the attorney for the yoga opponents, was first up.  He had the burden of showing the trial court erred in finding the yoga program Constitutional.  And the appellate justices made very clear that he was fighting an uphill battle.  Mr. Broyles offered up his tired rhetoric about the school district picking “religious winners and losers”.  The justices largely ignored such bloated proclamations and instead peppered him with pointed questions about the activity taking place in the yoga classroom.  Since his clients had never even observed, let alone participated, in the yoga classes, Mr. Broyles was left to rely upon his expert’s opinion that religion was “pervasive” in those classes based on video evidence.  The justices seemed unimpressed.

Next up was the school district’s attorney, followed by CLG partner Dave Peck on behalf of YES!.  Mr. Peck reminded the justices that the trial judge found the opinions of Mr. Broyles’ religious expert to be highly biased and “not credible.”  The trial court also found that the EUSD curriculum was completely devoid of religion and that there was absolutely no evidence of religious or spiritual instruction in the yoga classrooms.  With respect to the video evidence relied upon by the opposing expert, Mr. Peck cited the trial court’s finding that the videos simply depicted children engaged in exercise and nothing more.  Mr. Peck urged the court to reject Mr. Broyles’ conspiracy theories and to allow the highly successful yoga program to continue.

While there are few certainties in the legal universe, the three appellate justices seemed unanimous in their rejection of the appeal.  The formal opinion will be issued within 90 days and, as always, we will keep you updated.  We again thank you for your ongoing support.

Update on YES! – Yoga Appeal Hearing March 11, 2015

Update on YES! – Yoga Appeal Hearing March 11, 2015

Dear YES! Families –

The yoga opponents are still at it.  More than two years after it began, the battle to keep yoga as part of the EUSD health and wellness program continues. The next stop is the California Court of Appeal.

On March 11, the Court will hear oral arguments in Sedlock v. Baird, the case EUSD and YES! won at the trial court in June 2013.  The parties have already submitted exhaustive legal briefs and the appellate justices will no doubt be ready to fire off questions.  YES! will be represented by Dave Peck of Coast Law Group, who litigated the case in the trial court.  M.C. Sungaila of Snell & Wilmer, who drafted our team’s brilliant brief, will also be on hand.  It promises to be a lively debate.

Although seating is limited, the public is welcome to attend.  The hearing is at 9 a.m. in Division One of the Fourth District Court of Appeal, 750 B Street, Suite 300, San Diego.  Please note: no mobile phones or recording equipment are allowed in the courtroom, but may be checked in and held at security screening.

As always, we appreciate your ongoing support.

Yoga Appeal: YES! Legal Brief Filed


Greetings YES! families –

“Locals’ Summer” is upon us – these sweet mid-September days when we ease back into the routines of the school year yet still enjoy fantastic beach weather.

Over the past few months the YES! legal team, including our rock star co-counsel M.C. Sungaila, has been hard at work responding to the appeal in the yoga lawsuit.  As we updated you in June, Dean Broyles, the attorney for the plaintiffs, continues to spread his anti-yoga conspiracy theories at every opportunity.  Not surprisingly, the appellate brief filed by Mr. Broyles contains numerous misstatements of both fact and law.

I encourage you to read YES!’s brief which was filed in the Court of Appeal today.  Our arguments surgically dismantle plaintiffs’ theories and we look forward to having our victory affirmed.

The wheels of justice indeed turn slowly and the Court is not likely to schedule oral arguments until sometime in 2015.  So for now let’s enjoy the sunshine, hug our kids and BREATHE!

As always, we will keep you posted.

Dave Peck
Coast Law Group LLP



Yoga Lawsuit: Appeal Update


Dear YES! Families –

How time flies! School is nearly out, the county fair is underway and summer is once again around the corner.

This time last year we were wrapping up the yoga trial and preparing to give closing arguments. We now find ourselves responding to the appeal filed by the yoga opponents. Our brief is due mid-August so there is plenty of work to be done in the coming months.

While we remain confident our victory will be upheld by the appellate court, the battle has only intensified. Dean Broyles, the Sedlocks’ attorney, continues to solicit donations and spread his anti-yoga conspiracy theories at every opportunity. His original appellate brief, at a whopping 63 pages, was so bloated that the court refused to accept it without significant edits.

In addition to your ongoing support, YES! has been fortunate to receive several offers of assistance from legal professionals. After careful evaluation, we have elected to team up with appellate superstar M.C. Sungaila whose track record of success speaks for itself. Coast Law Group and Snell & Wilmer, Ms. Sungaila’s firm, will continue to represent YES! on a pro bono basis.

We wish you and your families a fun and safe summer. We’ll keep you posted.


Dave Peck
Coast Law Group LLP

P.S. You may have heard how LeBron James recently credited yoga with improving his performance in the NBA Finals. The NFL also recently released a great video championing the benefits of yoga.

March 15 Event: Yoga Stops Traffick


Greetings YES! families & friends:

We thought some of you might be interested in supporting an event on Saturday, March 15, from 1-4 p.m. at the Ashtanga Yoga Center, 1905 Calle Barcelona, Suite 218, Carlsbad.

Yoga Stops Traffick is a global event held in almost 200 locations to raise awareness and help prevent human trafficking and violence against women and children. 100% of the proceeds go directly to Odanadi International, an anti-trafficking organization.

The $20 suggested donation includes optional sun salutations led by local yoga instructors beginning at 1:00 p.m., with a reception following at around 2:00 p.m.

For more information, call the Ashtanga Yoga Center at 760-632-7093.




Here is a video with footage from the 2013 event:











Feel free to share with friends!

Encinitas Wellness Week and Festival!


YES families!

Mark your calendars for the annual Wellness Week Festival on January 25 at the Encinitas library, which kicks off a week of whole-body-health activities, events and offers. This is the fourth annual Wellness Week offered to the community by the Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association. Yoga-loving kids will love it, too!

For more information on events, see the DEMA website and below press release. We hope to see you there!







Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association
818 S. Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA  92024

For Immediate Release
Rick Moore


Encinitas, CA — January 15, 2014 —This year’s Wellness Week Festival will feature an unprecedented variety of activities and freebies, from salad- and smoothie-making to free chair massages and acupuncture treatments, all designed to help you learn about and experience new ways to improve your well-being.  Presented by The Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association, Wellness Week opens with a January 25 Festival at the Encinitas Library, and includes many other events and special offers through February 1.

The Festival, which runs from 11am to 3pm on Saturday, January 25, will have dozens of exhibitor booths and activities, both inside and outside the library, plus a wide range scheduled presentations and demonstrations.

Free health screenings are an important part of this year’s festival.  The lead sponsor, Tri-City Medical Center, will offer body fat testing and a “test your mood” depression screening.  Scripps Health will provide free blood pressure screenings, and North County Health Services will conduct children’s hearing and vision screenings.  Others will offer stress exams and sleep apnea screenings.

Participants will also have the chance to get active and try a boxing workout, experience a Whole Body Vibration machine, and take a spin on the RealRyder tilting bike.

Inside the library, participants can enjoy cooking and yoga demos, and attend presentations on topics as varied as juicing, veterinary acupuncture and surf fitness.

On the library patio, kids will enjoy fun activities like “Healthy Snacks Bingo,” “Grade your Grub” and “Compost Campus,” thanks to Healthy Day Partners.

Healthy appetites will also be satisfied.  In addition to free food and drink samples, including a chance to make your own smoothie on the Whole Foods smoothie bike, the festival will host a variety of healthy food vendors.

Visit the Encinitas 101 website for the full schedule of events and list of special offers:

Wellness Week is presented by the Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association, thanks to the generous support of Gold Sponsor Tri-City Medical Center; Silver Sponsors Scripps Health, Ranch & Coast Magazine and the San Diego County Library; plus Bronze Sponsors AGA Medical Options, Care 1st Health Plan, Community Health Group, Leucadia 101 Main Street Association, North County Health Services, Whole Foods Encinitas and Yelp.