Bridgeport BOE Considering Lawsuit Against State; City

Once again, the Bridgeport Board of Education wants to ligate away their problems.

At last night’s board meeting, following the announcement that the district is facing a more than $2.5 million budget gap, newly appointed BOE member Kate Rivera made a motion to “explore suing the state and the city to fully fund our schools.”

While the motion didn’t go very far, it was pushed to the process committee, with a majority of the BOE seeming to cautiously lean towards pursuing litigation.

“I would recommend that we move cautiously with this,” said Howard Gardner, who suggested that a student might make a better plaintiff than the board itself.

“We have been horrifically underfunded,” said Joe Larcheveque, agreeing with Gardner. “Starting to look at the process is something that needs to be done.”

However, the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding is already suing the state over funding. Bridgeport is among 16 municipalities named as plaintiffs to the CCJEF v. Rell case, which after 10 years is set to get their day in court this January.

In other words, the city is already suing the state over funding equity.

At a time when the district is facing a massive deficit, why would the BOE throw money into more litigation rather than into classrooms?

As Rev. Kenneth Moales put it: “Once you get into lawsuits It’s gonna be another couple of years that you’re not going to be educating the kids.”



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