JCPS responds to settlement to try to avoid legal battle over state takeover

(Source: WAVE 3 News)
(Source: WAVE 3 News)
Updated: Aug. 13, 2018 at 10:38 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Jefferson County Public School officials confirmed they have responded to the settlement offer to avoid a state takeover of the district.

The public learned of the offer in late July, but sources told WAVE 3 News it had been on the table for some time before that.

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Before a settlement was offered, JCPS planned to appeal the state takeover in a set of hearings scheduled to begin in September. However, JCPS Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio would like to avoid a legal battle.

"I think everyone really is interested in how we can move forward," Pollio said after news of the possible settlement came out. "I don't think anyone is interested in a long, protracted argument or a battle over this."

Officials have been quiet about what exactly is in the settlement, and are equally quiet about the district's counteroffer.

Interim Education Commissioner Dr. Wayne Lewis did share some details of his offer.

"It would include coming back in and doing another audit in fall '19 in which I would make another recommendation to whether the state should go into state assistance/state management," he said. "Or if anything has been remedied, than the state would walk away gladly."

WAVE 3 News also learned student assignment is a big sticking point for both parties. That's something on which the district is focusing.

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"We hear a lot of things in the community about student assignments and we hear it's one of the issues that is very divided and divisive among our community," Pollio said in early August.

The Kentucky Department of Education released the following statement:

After more than three weeks, JCPS responded to the Kentucky Department of Education's settlement offer on Friday. The Department responded on the same day and is yet to hear back. The Department continues to prepare for the hearing, which begins on September 10.

Details of the deal should be released to the public if and when both parties reach an agreement. But at this time, that has not happened.

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