Law & Courts News in Brief

California Groups Sue Over Program Reviews

By Mary Ann Zehr — June 16, 2009 1 min read
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A number of California education organizations have filed suit accusing the state of violating federal laws and the state constitution by suspending the monitoring of specialized education programs for at least one year.

The lawsuit, filed June 11 in superior court in San Francisco, says programs that won’t be reviewed include those serving students who are English-language learners, migrants, and neglected, delinquent, or homeless.

Without the monitoring, said Shelly Spiegel Coleman, the executive director of Californians Together, one of the groups bringing the lawsuit, “the districts are not held accountable for providing the services that are needed and for using the money to support the academic success of the students.”

Jack O’Connell, the state superintendent of public instruction, announced in a March 23 memo to school districts that he was suspending all “nonmandated on-site categorical program monitoring visits for at least one year.” He wrote: “During these challenging times, I want districts and schools to be able to focus their energy on improving student achievement and not on preparing for program audits.”

A version of this article appeared in the June 17, 2009 edition of Education Week

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