DALLAS -- The DISD home-rule movement was dealt a big blow Friday, one that could have serious consequences down the road.
Dallas civil court Judge Carl Ginzberg has ruled in favor of home-rule opponents and ordered the home-rule committee selection process stopped, at least until next week.
In this case the opposition is coming from the teachers union, Alliance AFT. It filed suit against DISD on Wednesday, claiming the district violated state law when it appointed four teachers to what will ultimately be the 15-member home-rule charter commission.
DISD's District-wide Advisory Committee is the body that came up with the list of four names. The lawsuit alleges that the teacher advisory committee itself is illegal because its members were appointed and were not elected, as is specified by state law.
"This whole process has been rushed in -- the intent was to have it on a November ballot,” said Rena Honea, president of Alliance A.F.T., DISD's teachers union. “The expectation from the other side, I believe, is that you trust us with what we're going to do with your children. There has been nothing about the children that has come from their side."
Honea and other home-rule opponents feel this movement to overhaul DISD is being rushed and is not about improving education, but more about who will control DISD.
This temporary restraining order is a threat to home-rule proponents because they want a new constitution drafted and ready for a city-wide vote in November, and the process is deadline sensitive.
A hearing is set for next Wednesday. If the judge again rules in favor of the teachers union, it puts that potential November home-rule vote in jeopardy.
We could not reach home rule supporters for comment Friday afternoon.