Douglas County Parents (DCP) is disappointed to learn that parents have lost another battle in the fight against politics in our schools. Two of three Appellate Court judges have reversed the decision of the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) that Douglas County School District (DCSD) violated the Fair Campaign Practices Act when it contracted for and disseminated a white paper favorable to the school board’s agenda (the Hess Report) with public funds during the 2013 school board campaign season.
In a convoluted ruling that primarily agrees with the ALJ’s findings, the Appellate Court decision hinges on the definition of the word “indirectly,” and effectively concludes that school districts may become involved in political campaigns, using tax dollars to evoke positive images of the effects of political ideologies. DCP agrees with the dissenting judge, who stated, “…the contribution here was significant, and the benefit conveyed by the District to the reform candidates was not merely incidental.”
While the Appellate Court majority ruled that the district’s actions were legal, they were certainly unethical as well as a blatant misuse of public funding meant to educate the children of Douglas County.
Douglas County Parents: We are parents & community members of all professions and political affiliations who are concerned about the policies that the Douglas County Board of Education and district administration have forced upon the families of our community.