CARTERVILLE, Ill. (AP) — Teachers who sued after part-time instructors were hired to lead their classes at a southern Illinois community college have won an appeal at the state Supreme Court.

The court says state law protects tenured faculty from losing classes to non-tenured instructors or staff with less seniority. John A. Logan College in Carterville laid off many tenured faculty members during a budget crisis move in 2016.

Seven sued the school, seeking back pay and benefits. They were recalled to work in 2017. The Supreme Court last week affirmed a decision by the Illinois Appellate Court and sent the case back to a judge in Williamson County.