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Compton parents' charter school petition could fail, judge rules

May 24, 2011 |  9:24 am

A judge has tentatively ruled that a petition by a group of Compton parents to force a poorly performing elementary school to convert to a charter school could fail because the signatures on the petition were not dated.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Anthony Mohr called the failure to document the dates when the McKinley Elementary School parents signed the petition “fatal," according to the Associated Press.

The Compton Unified School District, which governs McKinley, argued that dating each signature was crucial in determining whether a signer's child was enrolled at the school and had legal rights over the child at the time, the AP reported.

Mohr said in his tentative ruling Friday that he understood the “pain, frustration and perhaps education disadvantages” his 14-page decision might cause but added that he needed to follow the law.

Mohr agreed to hear more arguments June 7.

The McKinley parents were hoping to use California’s groundbreaking so-called “parent trigger” law to turn over their struggling elementary school to a charter operator.

McKinley ranks in the bottom 10% among all California elementary school, according to education department statistics.

Under the law, valid signatures of parents of half the school's students are required to initiate the reforms.

Parent Revolution, a Los Angeles-based educational reform group, submitted the signatures of 275 parents of 438 McKinley students, corresponding to 62% of all students.

RELATED:

Compton school board rejects parent trigger effort

Compton parents win a round in bid for charter school

Opinion: Education battle at Compton Unified school

-- Ann M. Simmons

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