BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana’s fight over Common Core is moving from the Legislature to the courts, as both sides in the debate over the nationalized learning standards have filed a lawsuit designed to shut the other side down.
On Monday, 17 state lawmakers filed a suit against the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) and the State Department of Education. It’s the first major legal action in the state against Common Core, TheAdvocate.com reports.
The lawmakers’ lawsuit claims the governmental bodies failed to publish the proposed Common Core learning standards in the Louisiana Register – as required by the Administrative Procedures Act – and failed to allow time for public input before the state board of education approved the standards in 2010, reports TheAdvocate.com.
“It is a valid question on whether an agency can have a significant change without following the administrative process,” said plaintiff and Republican state Rep. Brett Geymann, according to the news site.
State Superintendent of Education John White and BESE President Chas Roemer say those claims stem from a misreading of state law.
“There is no legal basis for their claim whatsoever,” White said in a conference call with reporters.
Plaintiffs, however, note that previous changes to the state’s learning standards were published in the Louisiana Register so the public could review them.
The plaintiffs are asking 19th Judicial District Court Judge Tim Kelley to issue a temporary injunction against the Common Core standards, which are set to take effect when school starts back up in just a few weeks.
Gov. Bobby Jindal, a Common Core critic, is not involved in the lawsuit, though he reportedly supports the lawmakers’ effort.
On the other side of the debate, a group of parents are suing Jindal on the grounds the governor is undercutting “the state legislature’s authority role to set educational policy and the Louisiana State Board of Secondary and Elementary Education’s ability to interpret and implement that policy,” LouisianaRecord.com reports.
Specifically, the parents – all of whom have children in a Louisiana public school – say Jindal has overstepped his authority by suspending state contracts with PARCC, a testing company that was to create a Common Core-aligned standardized assessment for Louisiana’s school children to take this coming school year, the news site reports.
Jindal suspended the contract on the grounds that state Superintendent White may have improperly chosen the PARCC without soliciting bids from other companies. The Jindal administration is reviewing the contract process, with the result being that Louisiana teachers and school leaders don’t know which test they’ll be giving students during the upcoming school year.
The parent plaintiffs are “seek(ing) an injunction to void Jindal’s executive orders and reverse the actions of the defendants,” LouisianaRecord.com reports.
It’s unclear if either lawsuit has a serious chance of winning in court. All that is certain is the chaos, controversy and dissension that’s engulfing The Pelican State is courtesy of Bill Gates, Jeb Bush and the other big government busybodies who have foisted their Common Core experiment onto an unsuspecting nation.