Judge denies York City School District request to delay receivership case
York County Judge Stephen Linebaugh denied the York City School District’s request for a stay regarding the state’s petition to appoint a receiver for the district. The stay was an effort by the York City School District to delay any decision in the receiver case until January 30th when Governor-elect Tom Wolf takes office.
That means on Monday Judge Linebaugh will begin hearing arguments from both sides, and eventually decide whether or not to appoint a receiver for the district, and if so, who that receiver will be.
The state has requested to appoint David Meckley who is the current Chief Recovery Officer of the district. Meckley was in the courtroom but did not speak. As CRO, Meckley created a financial recovery plan to pull the district out of financial distress and help with failing academic performance. Meckley has talked of plans to enter into an agreement with Charter Schools USA and turn the district into all charter schools; a plan he could move forward with, if appointed as receiver.
Judge Linebaugh also ruled on petitions filed by four separate parties who requested to intervene in the receiver case.
Linebaugh said he will allow employees of the York City School District to intervene, specifically the York City Education Association, and York City Education Support Professionals Association, this includes teachers. This means they will have a say in the receiver case and during hearings.
Kim Schwarz, a teacher in the York City School District said she is happy to have her voice heard, but fearful of the future of the district. "We are improving and we should be given the chance to continue to improve," said Schwarz. "Don't start something new. Our kids need consistency, and they need to see the same faces everyday."
Others did not fare so well.
Linebaugh denied requests submitted by parents, the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, and NAACP. Sandra Thompson, President of the York chapter of the NAACP isn't sure what the next step will be for the organization. "This is happening fast, so we have to decide what we are going to do, if we want to appeal, because we can appeal. We have to decide, if we do not chose to appeal, then we have to work with the other attorneys who are still working on the case," said Thompson.
Linebaugh said the receiver case is between the district and the Departament of Education. He went on to say the denied parties can be adequately represented by their school district.