Video used to challenge Ritz lawsuitOctober 23rd, 2013 at 4:31 pm by Jim Shella under Jim Shella's Political Blog
State school superintendent Glenda Ritz declined interview requests Wednesday regarding the lawsuit she filed against the State Board of Education. She says the board conducted an illegal meeting without her. However, there is video that suggests that, in fact, she was in the meeting in question.
The board action that caused Ritz to run to court took place, according to a board spokeswoman, in a public meeting chaired by Ritz.. You can see it on the official archive video of the October second meeting of the State Board of Education.
A board member suggests having the non-partisan Legislative Services Agency, or LSA, do its own calculations of A-to-F school grades as a check on grades issued by the Department of Education. “Actually, the department is more than excited about doing a check,” said Ritz during the meeting, “that’s just going to make sure that what we are going to release is correct.”
In a lawsuit filed Tuesday Ritz charges that a letter sent to legislative leaders regarding the LSA information was the result of a secret meeting. The suit was filed, said a spokesman, because she objects to LSA information coming out first.
Ritz spokesman Daniel Altman struggled to explain but the video seems clear. “It’s talking about two completely different things,” said Altman. “It’s apples and oranges.”
A spokeswoman for the board says the controversial letter was simply a product of staff followup to the October second meeting. “There were no secret meetings,” said Lou Ann Baker, “there was no conclave in a back room, there were no conference calls.”
Finally, the lawsuit is also controversial because the filing of a lawsuit by a state official, any lawsuit, is a job that falls to the Attorney General. A spokesman for Attorney General Greg Zoeller says that Zoeller now hopes he can “play a useful role in resolving this dispute out of court.”