Opponents to Elementary School Assignment Plan Speak Out

by scrosby on July 29, 2009

A request for injunction was filed today in the most recent court action against the Jefferson County Public School district and its student assignment plan. Attorney Teddy Gordon is asking the court to require JCPS to re-do student assignments at Stopher Elementary. Two of his clients sought entrance into Stopher for their kindergarten-aged children, and were instead assigned to schools more than twenty miles away. Gordon says that decision was improperly based on their race.

Plaintiff Sukh Bains says his daughter, Saanjh, was denied entrance to their neighborhood school, Stopher Elementary. She was assigned to Shelby Elementary, which is about 24 miles away from where they live.

“This was really out of left field for us,” says Bains. “We just don’t understand why they denied hardship transfers, and especially for the reason they’re giving, as far as diversity. That was the main thing, I just couldn’t understand how that factored in when our child is also of a minority. If it’s race-based, then I really don’t get the concept.”

Their attorney, Teddy Gordon, filed an injunction today, asking the courts to require the school district to re-do assignments at Stopher. School starts in two weeks, and Gordon says that’s plenty of time to re-do the assignments.

“All you have to do is push the magic button on the computer and say these students that were chosen and are being bused to Stopher from Shelby, they go to Shelby, and those students that are being bused from the Stopher area to the Shelby area, they’re going to Stopher. It’s quite easy,” says Gordon.

JCPS officials declined comment on the case today, saying they hadn’t had time to review the filing.

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