Monday, November 26, 2012

Court Rules for LASD in 2012-13 Case

Today LASD received a favorable ruling from the Superior Court on the writ BCS sought related to their 2012-13 facilities.  The courts upheld District actions on all three counts, which is fantastic news.  BCS sought three actions from the Court, and all three were denied:
  1. BCS sought to compel LASD to accept their enrollment forecast for 7-8 grade students.  The courts ruled that LASD is not precluded from using our reasonable judgement when we consider student enrollment projections.
  2. BCS sought to displace Egan students so that BCS students could use the City Gym.  The courts ruled that LASD had rightly weighed the impact on Egan students, and provided different multi-purpose space for BCS.  (See my blog post from August 2012 explaining this issue).  The Court also said we could not be compelled to provide gym space for their K-6 students when LASD K-6 kids don't have access to a gym. 
  3. BCS asked the Court to order LASD to produce an inventory of all furniture and equipment at every school.  The Courts rightly recognized that LASD has tried to work with BCS to ensure that they had reasonably equivalent equipment and furniture, but that BCS was trying to take this issue straight to court instead of working with LASD locally.

We often hear from certain BCS supporters that LASD is abusing the court system to try to deny them adequate facilities, yet the judicial record tells another story.  Last week the courts sanctioned BCS for their refusal to produce documents in their attorneys' fee suit.  Earlier this year, the courts ruled against BCS when they tried to end-run the District's authority to allocate facilities.   Today's rulings confirm that LASD is taking the proper steps and following the law in how we allocate space amongst the 10 school programs running in our community.  In fact, LASD has prevailed in 7 of the last 8 court cases, dating back to 2004.

I have said all along that I look forward to receiving clarity from the courts to confirm that the steps we are taking are permissible.  Today I am grateful for that clarity once again.  It is unfortunate that we have to keep doing this over and over.  I look forward to working with the community to solve this issue once and for all.

Here is the complete ruling from Judge Lucas:
Order Denying Petition for Writ of Mandate