DIY court research, anyone? If you want to see the documents for yourself, just click here, then click on the “Case Summary” link and enter this case number: RG09440971
Update: A judge denied the Oakland school district’s request to order a temporary halt to the transfer of funds to charter schools. One reason? The school board might not have the legal authority to file such a lawsuit, since it doesn’t have all of its governing powers back.
The scoop: The Oakland school district has filed suit against State Schools Superintendent Jack O’Connell — the guy who still controls the district’s finances and academic policies from Sacramento, almost six years after OUSD’s 2003 fiscal meltdown and state takeover.
The lawsuit was filed Thursday, in an attempt to reverse the decision. Last week O’Connell’s appointee, Vincent Matthews, approved a $450,000 transfer from the district’s general fund to Oakland’s independently run charter schools, according to news release sent out this morning.
The Board has taken this legal action only as a necessary last resort to prevent the District from being forced to allocate funds at a time when the funds simply do not exist. The mandated allocation would be over and above the funding that charter schools are entitled to receive by law and, furthermore, the extra allocation made by the Superintendent/State Administrator is not authorized by law.
The Board attempted to avoid the lawsuit by repeatedly requesting that the State Superintendent and State Administrator delay this action to allow for a dialogue. These requests have been ignored. Also ignored were the Board’s demands that Superintendent O’Connell and Administrator Matthews comply with their legal duty to participate in dispute resolution in such situations, as stated in the April 2008 MOU between the parties.
You can find a copy of the release here.
What do you make of this development? Did the school board do the right thing by authorizing this lawsuit?