When Jenks and Union school districts sued the parents of special-needs students who got state scholarships, critics said targeting the parents was improper and apparently designed to financially punish families. This week, the state Supreme Court agreed, tossing the lawsuit due to lack of standing and declaring that “the parents are clearly not the proper parties” to be sued.
The court's action makes clear that this was a frivolous lawsuit and the schools were involved in de facto extortion: Don't stand up for your children, or we will destroy you financially!
The court ruling is a win for Oklahoma citizens and a loss for overreaching bureaucrats. Fortunately, the affected families' legal bills were covered by supporters, but they never should have faced litigation in the first place. Unfortunately, the school districts' intimidation tactics reportedly caused some families not to seek scholarships because of lawsuit fears. Other students were affected as well: Taxpayer dollars that could have gone to the classroom in Jenks and Union instead funded this bogus and expensive legal shakedown.
It's time Jenks and Union moved on rather than refile the lawsuit. For one thing, the special-needs scholarships are saving taxpayer money.
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