East St. Louis school board sues Illinois State Board

Jun 22, 2012

Five members of the embattled East St. Louis School Board filed motions this morning in St. Clair County Circuit Court asking a judge to reverse the state of Illinois' decision to have them removed.

The members argued in court documents that the unanimous Illinois State Board of Education vote Thursday was unconstitutional and infringed on the "fundamental right to vote."

They argued the action violated an equal protection clause by removing just a select few of the more than 120 boards who have had schools on academic watch for more than three years. They said the state failed to allow an evidentiary hearing.

The measure passed by the state board mandates State Superintendent of Education Christopher Koch to appoint five people to an "Independent Authority" that will "exercise the powers and duties necessary to operate the district, improve school performance and student achievement," according to a statement by the state board.

The board also ousted the elected school board in North Chicago, again citing nagging underachievement.