FRANKFORT -- A lawsuit challenging the use of Kentucky labor law to obtain the names of teachers who participated in "sickouts" has been sent back to state court.

U.S. District Judge Danny Reeves on Thursday returned the case to Franklin Circuit Court.

The suit claims Gov. Matt Bevin's administration unlawfully used labor law to seek the names and records of teachers. It stems from protests at Kentucky's Capitol that forced some schools to close.

Attorney General Andy Beshear said he'll press the case to ensure no teacher is fined as a result of sickouts. Beshear is challenging Bevin in this year's gubernatorial election.

Bevin spokeswoman Elizabeth Kuhn said the ruling doesn't address the merits of the case and "simply moves the case to state court."

The case was shifted to federal court after a filing by Labor Cabinet attorneys. The cabinet says it's disappointed with the latest ruling and says it expects a "fair and impartial review" in circuit court.

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