Huntsville School Superintendent, Justice Department Continue Legal Fight

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The head of Huntsville City Schools is reacting to a court motion filed to take the school district to court. A legal team for the United States Department of Justice filed a motion Wednesday evening opposing the school district’s rezoning plan laid out earlier this month.

It’s safe to say Superintendent Dr. Casey Wardynski is irked by the folks in Washington who oppose his plan to educate children in Huntsville.

Wardynski called a meeting with reporters to help the understand what’s really going on between his school district and Department of Justice.

Wardynski called WHNT News 19 to the school district’s board room. Two board members were there, but the gathering was not a board meeting.  Wardynski said he needed to discuss something.

“I got up, read some newspapers and saw some reports,” said Dr. Wardynski. “I thought I could add some clarity.”

The Huntsville school leader is talking about the DOJ’s latest opposition to Huntsville City Schools’ recent plan to rezone.

The DOJ legal team announced at 10:00 p.m. Wednesday it was taking Wardynski and his team to court.

“I’ve worked at the highest level of United States government. I know what that looks like. I know why you drop a story 10 o’clock at night. The news media doesn’t have much time to react. They want to get it out there. There is not much time for analysis,” said Wardynski.

Wardynski believes the plan the DOJ wants in place and the one his team wants in place are different.

He says the DOJ’s plan is new and not what he discussed or expected.

“They have factual errors in their plan. As we identify them, such as numbers, these are things that are easily checked and with regard to law, these are things that have merit in court,” added Wardysnki.

Wardynski feels the DOJ doesn’t get it.

“We believe our plan creates diversity across a broader set of schools.  We believe our plan is practical, which means you can do it. We believe our plan complies with the law and all of the law,” added Wardynski.

Wardynski has talked with the DOJ about making changes since last year.  That team rejected Wardysnki’s ideas, he said, and filed paperwork Wednesday to take the superintendent to court.

“Our brief will spell out, in our view, what are very substantial and substantive errors in their filing yesterday with regard to facts and law,” added Wardynski.

Wardysnki told WHNT News 19  his plans focused on student assignments, quality of education and transportation.

He says the DOJ’s plan considered less.

“The difference between our plan and their plan is we provided a plan,” added Wardynski.

Wardynski says he will file paperwork in court next month aimed at the DOJ.

“My focus is on children and not endlessly talking to the United States government. Every day I am talking to them, I am not paying attention to something I should be doing for kids, added Wardynski.

Wardynski says the cost of all this legal work, as of March 2013, is about a half million dollars.



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