Did The State Board Of Education Break The Law By Not Voting On The WEIC Redistricting Plan?

Delaware State Board of Education


If the State Board does not approve the plan as submitted by the Wilmington Education Improvement Commission, it shall notify the chairperson of the Commission in writing, give reasons why the plan was not approved, and allow the Commission to resubmit the plan within 60 days of the chairperson receiving the notice of denial. -Senate Bill 122, 148th General Assembly

Yesterday, the Delaware State Board of Education declined to even vote on the Wilmington Education Improvement Commission redistricting final plan.  By doing so, they may have violated the letter of the law determined by Senate Bill 122.  They voted unanimously to amend their motion to vote on the plan and kicked the plan back to WEIC.  They are going to draft their questions and concerns and will present this to WEIC prior to the end of January.  The problem with the law comes when they DO vote on the plan.  If it is after January 31st, they have violated the sixty day window for a response from WEIC if they deny the plan because they have to act on it by March 31st, 2016.  The Delaware State Board of Education clearly doesn’t understand the legal process for this plan, even though the Delaware Department of Education has three Deputy Attorney Generals from the Delaware Department of Justice.

They are not sending a letter of denial, they are sending a letter addressing concerns and questions about the plan.  They should have actually voted on the plan as is, and then the sixty day window would have kicked in.  Unless the State Board of Education puts an agenda on the Delaware Public Meeting Calendar seven days prior to a meeting where they will vote on the plan, which would have to be by January 24th, this Sunday, they have violated the law twice: first by not taking action on the plan prior to the sixty-day window, and then by not putting up an agenda for a public meeting seven days prior to the meeting.  WEIC is not obligated in any way whatsoever to honor the State Board of Education’s request for information.  In fact, by allowing the State Board to perform in this illegal fashion, it could land them in violation as well.  The clock is ticking…tick-tock, tick-tock…

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