Eighteen parents in the Upper St. Clair, Pa., district have filed a lawsuit in federal court to reverse the school board’s decision to eliminate the International Baccalaureate program.
The lawsuit, filed March 13 in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh, alleges that board members were motivated by a “political vendetta” against students and others who supported the IB program and had campaigned against them in an election last year.
Board members in the 4,300-student district voted 5-4 on Feb. 20 to do away with the IB program, which serves about 750 students in the district, according to the lawsuit. The suit alleges that one board member said the IB program might be inconsistent with a “strong Judeo-Christian value system” at a board candidates’ forum in October.
Several board members who favored eliminating the program did not respond to requests for comment.
The IB program is a rigorous curriculum for students ages 3-19 that places a strong emphasis on core academic concepts and understanding of foreign cultures. Run by a nonprofit foundation with headquarters in Geneva, the program is used by schools in 122 countries.
A version of this article appeared in the March 22, 2006 edition of Education Week