Minneapolis school district takes state to court

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  • Updated: October 15, 2012 - 9:32 PM

The two sides differ on whether the state should pay lease aid on two charter schools leasing district buildings.

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nomorepaperOct. 16, 12 6:11 AM

Government entities suing eachother and the taxpayers get the shaft. Typical.

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dvsdan123Oct. 16, 12 6:50 AM

Do I have this correct. Minneapolis school district using taxpayers money to hire lawyers to sue the State of Minnesota who will use taxpayers money to hire lawyers to defend the lawsuit. Winners, the lawyers, losers the taxpayers.

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EleanoreOct. 16, 12 7:07 AM

Charter schools really do not fit into Minnesotas uniform system of schools as required by the state constitution. Not only is this money that should not be paid, these schools need to either be brought into the state system in toto and conform to state standards from acceptance of ALL students to standardized programs of education uniform with all other schools in the state, or terminated as in they should not be allowed to issue state recognized diplomas or grade satisfactory coursework for advancement.

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mplsjohnOct. 16, 12 7:13 AM

Just follow the rules Minneapolis and save us money. This is one more example why schools should not get more money.

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andersod62Oct. 16, 12 7:49 AM

Again, just because you don't want to follow the rules and you don't like the outcome..., you whine and start a lawsuit..., pathetic.

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publicchoiceOct. 16, 12 8:07 AM

Minneapolis Public Schools owns the buildings - paid for by tax dollars - and because of their inability to adequately teach students, turns the paid-for buildings over to charter schools (that they approve) and then collects rent/lease aid. And then uses tax payer money to sue the entity that gave the District the funds to pay for the buildings. TAX PAYERS WAKE UP. The District is collecting twice, outsourcing one of the most important public responsibilities (i.e., education) and WE ARE PAYING (taxes) to defend them against US.

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rlwr51Oct. 16, 12 9:54 AM

Getting paid, twice, to outsource?

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swmnguyOct. 16, 1210:20 AM

It's unusual that I agree with the poster "Eleanore," but in this case I do 100%.

We either have rules and processes for public education or we don't. We can't have it both ways. The public schools are judged in the context that they have to serve all students, regardless of ability, parental involvement, what language they speak, and so on. A very small group of students use up an inordinate proportion of the resources. We as a society have decided to forge ahead and continue to try to serve those students, despite the cost. This group included the disabled including the skyrocketing numbers of severely autistic and otherwise developmentally disabled kids, kids with emotional problems, kids whose parents are not involved or involved negatively, and kids dealing issues of poverty that include hunger, homelessness, disease and dysfunction.

That's what we've decided to do. It costs a lot of money. This inhibits the resources available to all the students in general. These kids are the ones dragging down the test scores and graduation results. But we don't account for the Health and Human Services spending that comes out of the schools budgets. We don't subtract out the scores from kids who are nowhere near grade level cue to disability or social/behavioral/economic factors. My kids in the MPS pull the curve higher, while making do with fewer resources.

But then, dishonestly, we turn around and mandate that already-scarce funding be funneled to schools that get only kids whose parents are involved enough to seek out the charter schools. The charter schools rarely provide the very costly special ed programs required by Federal law. Disruptive students can be and are dismissed. Labor rules are loosened. The constant cases of fiscal misfeasance and malfeasance come only from the charter schools.

If we're going to educate all the kids in America, we can see what it costs. To criticize the public schools on the one hand while forcing them to subsidize schools without the same requirements or accountability is dishonest.

If parents want their kids to go to schools that do not conform to all curriculum standards, do not have to educate all kids who show up, do not have to provide special ed, do not have to follow labor standards, do not have the same fiscal accountability, they're perfectly free to do so. We call such schools "Private Schools," and they're all over the place. They just aren't, and shouldn't be, publicly funded. We're seeing a movement to privatize and corporatize the schools, to move huge amounts of public, tax-funded money into private, unaccountable, corporate hands. It's a bad idea and should be opposed on all levels.

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EleanoreOct. 16, 1210:56 AM

Very well said swmnguy. You did leave out one key detail that people should not forget in their analysis of "how we structure our schools and educational programs": tolerating a two tierd system as you've described is both reasonably, and demonstrably, unconstitutional and lawless. The language in the state constitution (remember, we can't speak for every state, just MN) is very clear and this disuniformity rises to an level where it bleeds out any possibility of a uniform system. These schools either need to be taken into the state system, funded and administered properly in relation to the rest of that system, or they and their educational conferrments need to be negated. This is a legislative failure, one of the MDE, and one people who ignore this and accept propoganda in favor of their seperate existence do so at the risk of our very rule of law.

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EleanoreOct. 16, 1211:06 AM

"It's unusual that I agree with the poster "Eleanore," but in this case I do 100%." From a Charlie Brown Christmas: Charlie Brown; "Don't think of it as dust. Think of it as maybe the soil of some great past civilization. Maybe the soil of ancient Babylon. It staggers the imagination. He may be carrying soil that was trod upon by Solomon, or even Nebuchudnezzar." Pigpen; "Sort of makes you want to treat me with more respect, doesn't it?"

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