DISD School Board Faces Lawsuit Over Home Rule

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Dallas teachers group Alliance-AFT has filed a lawsuit against the Dallas Independent School District. (Published Thursday, Jun 12, 2014)

    The Dallas teachers group Alliance-AFT has filed a lawsuit against the Dallas Independent School District according to our partners at the Dallas Morning News.

    The lawsuit claims that the school board is violating state law by how it's setting up the Home Rule Charter Commission.

    DISD School Board Faces Lawsuit Over Home Rule

    [DFW] DISD School Board Faces Lawsuit Over Home Rule
    The Dallas Independent School District school board faces a lawsuit over it's home rule charter. It comes on the same day the district is meeting to decide how to elect the remaining members of the home rule commission. (Published Thursday, Jun 12, 2014)

    DISD Board of Trustees member Mike Morath said the board is still figuring out a way to select the remaining 11 members of the 15-person commission.

    "Making sure that everyone is represented and that everyone feels represented is an important part of the process," Morath said. "There's no strict proportionally requirement in the statue, but you do have to make sure that all of the diversity of the city is represented."

    Morath said one of the challenges they face while selecting the other commission members is a lack of precedence because they are the first district to attempt to become a charter district.

    Four members were selected last week by the district advisory council, according to DISD School Board Member Dan Micciche.

    Micciche said the state diversity requirements are also a challenge.

    According to Micciche, the following three questions are topics the school board needs to address before they pick the commission.

    1. How to define “the district” and what population to use to represent it.
    2. How to reflect the socioeconomic statues (SES) of what they define as "the district."
    3. How to reflect the “geographic diversity” of the district.

    The school board is meeting Thursday afternoon to talk about how to proceed.

    People who are opposed to the Home Rule Charter said they are afraid of the commission's task to write a new constitution for the DISD.

    "We're hoping that once they have appointed their members, that they actually take their time to write this charter, no rushing, to make sure they're doing what's in the best interest for the students of Dallas ISD," said Davis.

    For Davis not knowing what could be in that constitution is also a concern.

    "Anytime you have a lot of unknowns, it's very scary," said Angela Davis, NEA-Dallas President. "If we knew everything they were going to do and could possibly do, then we would have some ground."

    Some say a charter is necessary to fix the problems in the DISD.

    "What we need to do is improve outcomes for students. I am far less scared about some possible outcomes that a home rule commission might come up with, than I am scared about us continuing on the path that we have now," Morath said.

    Micciche said over 400 residents in the DISD have applied for consideration of appointment to the commission.

    Once the commission is selected and has written a new charter for the district, it will go to the public for a vote.