By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The union representing Philadelphia public school teachers has fired back in court over the School Reform Commission’s move to cancel their contract.

When the SRC canceled the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers’ contract last week, it also asked Commonwealth Court to affirm its authority to do so.

Now, the PFT has responded.  Union president Jerry Jordan, in a statement, said the cancellation lacked legal merit and he called the act “cowardly and disrespectful.”

The union has filed motions saying Commonwealth Court has no jurisdiction in this dispute — contending it belongs in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board, or in arbitraton.

The union is also asking for an injunction to prevent the school district from making changes in the union’s health care plan.