Bridgeport BOE Votes To Explore Legal Action Against Both City and State

On Monday, the Bridgeport Board of Education voted 7-2 in favor of exploring legal options against the state Board of Education over two new charter schools approved for Bridgeport.

At the very same meeting, the board also voted to explore their legal options against the city of Bridgeport over what they consider to be underfunding the schools.

The irony, of course, is how much money the board will be spending to pursue legal action. When these same folks decided to sue their own superintendent last year, legal fees reached seven figures. If the board feels the schools are so underfunded, why would they jump at spending so much money on not one but two lawsuits?

What better way to save resources than to engage in unnecessary legal action! This makes so much sense. Except, it doesn’t at all.

In light of Maria Pereira’s recent internet hijinks, none of this comes as a surprise, but it’s no less ridiculous.

How can the board in one breath complain about the lack of resources in schools and then in the next, jump to hiring lawyers?

This is particularly the case for the board’s opposition to charter schools.

Unlike the Minimum Budget Requirement issue, for which board members and Superintendent Fran Rabinowitz made plans to meet with Mayor Bill Finch and Commissioner Stefan Pryor this Friday to discuss possible remedies before talking to a lawyer, the board has taken no such action on the two charter schools.

Put simply, members of the board are acting like the children they purport to educate. They passed a resolution against charter schools knowing it held no sway over the State Board of Education. Then, when the state board votes the other way, the local board members throw a tantrum, which is all this legal nonsense will amount to.

You see, members of the Bridgeport Board of Education are under the sad misapprehension that charter schools siphon funding from the local school district. They don’t, which is why approval is handled by the state board in the first place, and why the local board has no standing of any kind — legal, logical or ethical.



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