City News Roundup
The mother of a 16-year-old boy who was stabbed to death in a Chicago school last month has filed a lawsuit in her son's name against the city and its school board, seeking damages totaling $15.4 million.
The lawsuit, filed on Feb. 26 in Cook County (Ill.) Circuit Court, charges that Reginald Mays, a student at Bowen High School, died as a result of negligence by the city and the board.
According to Chicago police, the boy was stabbed during a change in classes on Feb. 23 in what they describe as a clash between black and Hispanic students. A 16-year-old student at the school has been charged with voluntary manslaughter in the case.
"Basically, the suit deals with two things: the lack of adequate security and the lack of facilities to provide prompt and adequate emergency care in the school," explained Geoffrey Johnson, an attorney representing Earnestine Mays, the mother of the dead student.
According to Alfred Rudd, director of safety for the school system, six police officers--two working full time and four part time--are assigned to patrol the school's grounds.
"I have also observed a high degree of cooperation at the school from faculty members when it comes to keeping watch during lunchtime and change of classes," he added. "The school's general decorum, in my opinion, is very sound."
The chairman of one of New York City's local school boards has resigned after being accused of using $1,000 in board money for installing cable television in his home, renting limousines, and buying liquor.
Jerry Evans, chairman of Community School Board No. 3 on Manhattan's West Side, allegedly used checks drawn on the school board's account to pay for rental cars from the Rainbow Limousine Service and a hookup to Manhattan Cable Television, according to Robert Terte, spokesman for the city school system.
Other checks were reportedly made out to a liquor store and to petty cash.
Mr. Terte said Schools Chancellor Frank J. Macchiarola has accepted Mr. Evans's resignation. Mr. Evans had been a member of School Board No. 3 for 11 years.
Attorneys for the Seattle school district this month asked the Thurston County (Wash.) Superior Court to order an increase in state aid to local education agencies.
The school district's suit, if successful, would expand the state's definition of "basic education" to include support for such high-cost items as bilingual education; programs for the handicapped and dis-advantaged; desegregation; and transportation.
Currently, the state's definition of basic education is restricted to regular in-class instruction.
According to David Burman, an attorney for the Seattle district, that definition meant that state revenues accounted for only 55 percent of the school system's fiscal 1981 budget.
"That level of funding may be reduced even more during the current legislative session," he added.
The lawsuit, which was initiated last August, stems from a successful suit against the state in 1976. In that case, Superior Court Judge Robert J. Doran ruled that schools' excessive dependence on special levies was unconstitutional.
Judge Doran ordered the state legislature to redefine and to fully support basic education in the state. His decision was upheld by the state Supreme Court in 1978.