Judge sets evidentiary hearing date for lawsuit related to dean elimination
A Clark County District Court judge has scheduled an evidentiary hearing for a lawsuit related to the school district’s decision to eliminate deans.
During a telephonic conference Tuesday afternoon, Judge Nancy Allf set Aug. 14 as the start date for the hearing, where the defendants and plaintiffs will make their arguments. The decision extends the temporary restraining order she issued last week. The temporary restraining order has temporarily frozen the district’s removal of the dean position.
Clark County Superintendent Jesus Jara announced in early June that he was eliminating deans at middle and high schools to shore up the district’s $17 million deficit for the upcoming academic year. The decision set off a firestorm, leading to a few tense public meetings and litigation.
The Clark County Association of School Administrators and Professional-Technical Employees — the union that represents deans — filed a lawsuit against the school district, alleging that Jara and the School Board of Trustees violated the state’s Open Meeting Law when making the decision.
The union has been requesting an audio recording of a closed meeting where the superintendent and trustees allegedly discussed and voted on the matter.
“Transparency is the rule, and any attempt to subvert that rule should not be allowed,” according to a status report the union filed with the court Tuesday. “Defendants’ refusal to provide the recording of the June 5 meeting demonstrates that Defendants are still engaged in gamesmanship, do not understand their public obligations, and think that Nevada’s Open Meeting Law is a nuisance or annoyance to be circumvented.”
The school board’s agenda for its regular meeting Thursday has an item titled “For Corrective Action” regarding the dean elimination. It’s unclear what action the board may consider. A school district spokeswoman said she did not have more information.
The controversy surrounding the dean decision has now gobbled up roughly half of the summer. The first day of school for Clark County School District students is Aug. 12.