Does Florida's third-grade retention lawsuit belong in court?
The last time Florida's third-grade retention law went to court, Leon County Judge Karen Gievers berated school districts and the Florida Department of Education for the way they implemented it.
On Tuesday, questioning from a three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal revealed concerns over whether Gievers should have had the opportunity to rule at all.
The judges said they did not understand why the local issues of student promotion were not handled in local jurisdictions, rather than in Leon County, as Hernando County school district lawyer Richard Bush suggested. They also wondered why the plaintiffs did not take their complaints over the policies that guided implementation of the state law to the Division of Administrative Hearings.
And that was before one of the judges, T.K. Wetherell II, opined that the parents seemed to be subverting the law's intent with a "ridiculous" definition of testing "participation" as sitting down and signing in without answering any questions.