Ritz Files Suit Against Board of Education

Oct 23, 2013

State superintendent Glenda Ritz has raised the stakes of her showdown with Indiana’s top education panel, naming all ten members of the State Board of Education as defendants in a lawsuit she filed Tuesday in Marion County Circuit Court. Ritz thinks the board has violated the state’s Open Door law.

Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz.

State Board of Education members are frustrated with Superintendent Glenda Ritz because they still don’t have the preliminary data used to calculate A-F school letter grades. So last week they sent a letter to Indiana’s top Republican lawmakers asking the state’s Legislative Services Agency to intervene.

According to a statement from her office, Ritz says members of the State Board violated Indiana’s Open Door Law in crafting that request.  Ritz is asking the Marion County Circuit Court to block the Legislative Services Agency from complying with the State Board’s request.

David Galvin is a Department of Education spokesman.

“So the suit isn’t necessarily about A-F as it is about the constant secret meetings between the State Board of Education members and not including the superintendent in these conversations,” Galvin said.

In a statement, Gov. Mike Pence defended the members of the State Board, expressing confidence that no laws were violated.

The Department of Education says it is still waiting for some of the standardized test data it needs to calculate the grades.