Judge Tosses Jindal’s Anti-Common Core Lawsuit


A judge in Baton Rouge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and lawmakers who say state officials violated state law after adopting the controversial Common Core standards in 2010.

Jindal’s administration released a statement in response to the dismissal, saying he was “disappointed” by the decision and would be looking to appeal.

Jindal is also suing the Obama administration in federal court over the issue, claiming it played a role in pushing states to adopt the standards.

“It’s important to note that we are also still fighting Common Core in federal court, where a judge has recently ruled that our case has standing and will be heard,” Jindal said.

The governor had previously announced he will back an effort to repeal the standards in his home state.  The new proposal would require math and reading standards for kindergarten through 12th grade to be created using input and approval from local school boards, state education officials and the state legislature, writes Lyndsey Layton for The Washington Post.

In addition, Louisiana would no longer participate in Common Core standardized testing.  The tests are being administered to over 340,000 students in the state this spring.

According to the lawsuit, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, or BESE, and the Education Department did not comply with Louisiana’s Administrative Procedures Act when they adopted the standards.  The act requires public notice, a comment period and legislative oversight, reports Melinda Deslatte for The Advertiser.

Judge Timothy Kelley of the District Court in Baton Rouge dismissed the case by saying lawmakers brought the case to court too late.  According to state law, any challenge to the standards must be brought about within the first two years.  However, lawmakers filed their case five years after the standards were adopted.

The standards, benchmarks of what students should learn in each grade level in English and math, have been adopted in 43 states across the country, as well as in the District of Columbia.

“Today’s ruling should be a reminder there is no legal basis, and no academic basis, for an extremist plan to politicize the classrooms of our state,” said state superintendent for education John White, who wants math and reading experts to review and tweak the Common Core State Standards but opposes any plan to scrap them entirely.  “We need a professional plan going forward,” he said. “The responsible, professional path is to review and monitor the state’s academic standards, making adjustments where appropriate.”

Jindal previously supported Common Core, signing off on the standards’ adoption in 2010.  However, he has since changed his mind and has spent the past 18 months trying to repeal them.  Earlier efforts by the governor were unsuccessful.