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I’m A Mom Seeking Records Of Critical Race and Gender Curriculum, Now The School Committee May Sue To Stop Me (Update)

I’m A Mom Seeking Records Of Critical Race and Gender Curriculum, Now The School Committee May Sue To Stop Me (Update)

On June 2, 2021, the South Kingstown (RI) School Committee will hold a public hearing on suing me because I submitted a lot of public records requests to get answers to my questions which the School District would not answer.

I am a mother in the South Kingstown School District in Rhode Island investigating through public records requests how critical race and gender theories are integrated into lessons, school policies, and contracts. Now the School Committee is considering suing me to stop me.

My child is enrolled in kindergarten and I became concerned that Critical Race Theory (CRT) and gender theory were integrated into lessons when an elementary school principal told me that teachers don’t refer to students as “boys” and “girls.” Additionally, I was told a kindergarten teacher asks five-year-olds, “what could have been done differently on the first Thanksgiving” in order to build upon a “line of thinking about history.” I asked why kids could not be called “boys” and “girls” and was told it was “common practice.” I asked for clarification on the “line of thinking” about history but got no answers. The more questions I asked, the less answers I received.

Then I asked for a tour of the elementary school and the Superintendent offered me an in-person or virtual tour, but never responded with a date and time despite my numerous follow-up emails and phone calls. After almost a month of radio silence the Superintendent then told me that now they were not offering tours due to Covid restrictions. Yet the Superintendent offered tours of other schools to campaign for a school bond.

I also asked to see the elementary school curriculum. I asked the principal, the school committee, the superintendent, the director of curriculum, and even the legal department at the Rhode Island Department of Education to allow me to view the curriculum. The school’s Director of Curriculum told me she was unavailable and never responded when I said I could view the curriculum on any day and time. Then a school committee member directed me to file an Access to Public Records Act (APRA) request on the school district website to obtain the curriculum. After thirty days, I received an incomplete curriculum and filed an APRA complaint with the Attorney General.

By contrast, curriculum for two charters schools in South Kingstown (Kingston Hill Academy and The Compass School) is available on their websites. I scheduled a tour of a private school in five minutes. Why was it so hard to get a tour and see the curriculum in my own public school district?

At this point I had reason to believe that the school district was hiding information and deliberately stonewalling me. I started using the APRA request google link on the school district’s website to request public documents that might answer my questions about CRT, gender theory, and other concerns. When I requested the emails of a school committee member the estimate of what they would charge me came back as $9,570. Who can afford that?

Under the APRA, “a reasonable charge may be made for the search or retrieval of documents. Hourly costs for a search and retrieval shall not exceed fifteen dollars ($15.00) per hour and no costs shall be charged for the first hour of a search or retrieval.” Additionally, each copy costs 15 cents.

I amended my request to narrow the scope of requested emails to six months and requested digital copies instead of hard copies. That $9,570 estimate dropped to $79.50. I quickly realized that if I structured many specific and narrow requests, I could afford to purchase the public information which was otherwise inaccessible to me due to the non-responsiveness of my school leadership. I felt like I had cracked the code to this mystery of inaccessible information.

These initial high estimates of public records requests are common barriers to parents obtaining information about their children’s school district. A parent in another Rhode Island school district received an estimate of $17,295.75 to obtain public information related to the cost of an athletic field. Access to public information is not cheap. Or equitable.

I continued to submit small and numerous public record requests to investigate my school district. The school department continued to respond in the statutory time period of ten days. A school committee member even made a snarky reference to my APRA requests in an email. Evidently my APRA requests were not problematic if they were the subject of sarcasm from a school committee member.

No one in the school department ever told me it was a problem while I was in constant contact with them to request and purchase information. I purchased over $300 worth of public information and shared it to a private Facebook group to raise awareness about indoctrination in Rhode Island schools. I developed a growing network of likeminded teachers, parents, and community members who gave me information about CRT and gender theory infiltrating Rhode Island school districts.

Then, on Friday, May 28, the school committee set an agenda item for a public meeting to discuss “filing litigation against Nicole Solas to challenge the filing of over 160 APRA requests.”

My school committee now is considering suing me because I submitted a lot of public records requests to get answers to my questions which the School District would not answer. This same school committee which told me to use a statutorily prescribed process to obtain one piece of information (curriculum) is now having a public meeting to discuss suing me for using the same statutorily prescribed process to obtain other information. The message was clear: ask too many questions about your child’s education and we will come after you.

The most puzzling part of this shameful abuse of government power is that numerous attorneys with whom I’ve consulted cannot figure out the basis of a claim against me.  There is no limit to submitting public record requests. Further, the APRA statute contemplates multiple requests made in a 30-day period for the purpose of cost. It states: “[M]ultiple requests from any person or entity to the same public body within a thirty (30) day time period shall be considered one request.” Accordingly, I did not submit 160 requests – I submitted ONE.

I suspect the South Kingstown School Department is displeased that a parent has found a way to legally compel responses to difficult questions surrounding CRT and gender theory in public school. I suspect they are also displeased about my criticism of the antiracism policy and appointment and hiring policy, both of which are under review and breathtakingly racist.

The Access to Public Records Act prohibits a government body from compelling a citizen to justify or explain her requests for public information. But, here I am attending my first in-person school committee meeting where my own name is one of two agenda items in open session. Here I am feeling immense pressure to explain and justify my public information requests to this shameful government body on pains of potential litigation against me. A school committee scheduling a public meeting to discuss “filing lawsuit against Nicole Solas to challenge filing of over 160 APRA requests” is nothing short of an attempt to deprive me of my civil rights to obtain public information about my child’s school.

I can think of a dozen better ways my APRA requests could have been addressed. The Superintendent could have hired a temporary assistant for $12 an hour to retrieve documents. If the school department is concerned about this extra cost of fulfilling my public record requests, it should use its 64 million dollar budget more wisely than to hire a consultant to manage School District’s Facebook page for $50 an hour to post important messages like memes that say “Happy Mother’s Day.”

The school committee also could have reached out to me and asked if they could answer my questions directly. But no. Instead, they sought to publicly vilify a mother.

Although I am shocked that a government body would use the threat of litigation to publicly bully, harass, and intimidate a mother who was advocating for her child’s education, I am not afraid. And I will not stop asking questions.

This shameful retaliation against a parent who demand transparency from public schools will not be tolerated. Every parent needs to keep asking questions. Every parent needs to submit more public records requests when they do not receive answers to their questions from school leaders. Hold your elected representatives accountable and do not allow them to prevent you from protecting and advocating for your children.

If the school system starts to bully you because you are asking too many questions, then you’re winning. Don’t give up.

UPDATE

(added 6/2/2021 by LI Staff)

GoLocalProv:

Rhode Island ACLU Executive Director Steve Brown told GoLocal on Tuesday he believes the South Kingstown School Committee’s response is “inappropriate.”

“I can certainly understand the difficulties facing a municipal body when confronted with such a huge number of APRA requests in a short period of time,” said Brown “However, I am also hopeful that, upon consideration, the school committee will recognize that suing a resident for this activity is not an appropriate response.”

(added June 3 by LI Staff)

South Kingstown (RI) School Committee Votes NOT To Sue Mom Nicole Solas Who Sought CRT Records

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Comments

Thank you for doing this.

    Brave Sir Robbin in reply to scfanjl. | June 1, 2021 at 12:28 pm

    Troublesome peon. You are being watched…. and warned. You have a place. Stay in it, or else suffer cancellation.

      bullhubbard in reply to Brave Sir Robbin. | June 2, 2021 at 9:33 am

      Why do three “people” downvote this? I reckon they don’t understand irony . . . not coincidentally, irony is one of the qualities of human discourse being made obsolete by the new paradigm of humorless, hate-filled racist ideologues who are, to a great extent, gratingly literal-minded.

      Have an up-vote.

      As far as the article goes, this mother has balls of brass, and we need more like her to take it to these totalitarian-minded bureaucrats.

      theApostle in reply to Brave Sir Robbin. | June 2, 2021 at 2:52 pm

      Parents of school age children (in public schools), take control of your child’s education. “Critical Race Theory (CRT)” can be stopped, and/or stalled in court. There are MORE of us than the Wokers/Woke Public School Officials types.

      Wokers are effective because they are loud, consistent, and more importantly they mobilize and group together quickly. We Non-Woke parents aren’t lazy, we’re just busy working on the DREAM and taking care of our families.

      We as parents claim we will die for our kids? Public schools aren’t just about manipulating our children/socially engineering our children, it’s about changing our country! This is about the life of your child, TO ME; life or death.

      Parent’s, both liberal & conservative we must maintain a standardized basic education for our school children. Our children should not be indoctrinated politically, (but should be taught the definition of indoctrination).

      Again, there are more of us than CRT advocates/Wokers. Stop empowering teachers/school officials. They do not have authority over your kids, YOU DO! We don’t know these people (public school officials)… we hand over our kids to strangers everyday! We must question what they teach and how they teach. Public schools have become a daycare center for socialist indoctrination.

      Personally, I have 2 grown children that I raised, and I am currently raising 3 school aged children. I have bèen challenging educators since kids have been in my life. I have found many educators will lie about political agendas, or don’t even know they’re promoting certain political agendas. they believe their own bullshit because they have been indoctrinated; they don’t know anything else, its their orientation.

      So what do we do? We’ve seen some parents fighting back against “Critical Race Theory”, however we need to organize more. There are more of us than them. WE ARE SMARTER, TOO! I know most of us are busy working and providing for our families, but this is our children’s lives, would you die to save your child’s life?

      We need to form Anti-CRT groups at the local, state, regional and national levels. We need to use all social media outlets. We need to use flash mobs to mobilize resistance at school board meetings. We need to form groups that take this CRT nonsense to court (believe me, school systems do not like lawsuits). We need to be louder, more consistent and mobilize quicker than the morons selling Critical Race Theory, there are more of us and we are smarter.

      We can apply this same strategy to fight all this socialist/fascist nonsense seeping into our culture.

    Shary in reply to scfanjl. | June 2, 2021 at 8:03 am

    You are a brave woman. Keep up the tenacity. How can we help you? Can’t allow the Marxist left in US take away parents rights. Again democrats reach inside every freedom lover to destroy America

Get a lawyer. Don’t wait to be sued. Counter-sue and then counter-sue again. This is war. Be prepared to fight.

    lhw in reply to irv. | June 1, 2021 at 9:42 am

    I suspect that if you provide a means to fund you, a number of people will be glad to do so. This is the worst sort of cancel culture in existence. You are exercising your legal rights as a parent to gain information that should be public.

      maxmillion in reply to lhw. | June 1, 2021 at 12:31 pm

      An alternative to “gofundme” would be most helpful here.

        henrybowman in reply to maxmillion. | June 1, 2021 at 1:57 pm

        GiveSendGo will host fund drives for traditional Americans right-wing extremists.

        GB Bari in reply to maxmillion. | June 1, 2021 at 2:05 pm

        GiveSendGo is recommended. That site does not discriminate against traditional Americans who are not politically correct or Leftwing extremist cancel culture bullies.

      Grant’sGhost in reply to lhw. | June 1, 2021 at 1:03 pm

      Happy to kick in a few bucks. Our side has to stop being nice…

      bullhubbard in reply to lhw. | June 2, 2021 at 9:39 am

      Their stonewalling and their temerity to actually threaten legal action against a parent who rightfully should get all the answers she needs at a PTA meeting (does the PTA still exist?) is evidence of their ill-intent. If their anti-racist curricula are so wholesome and necessary for the correct tutelage of Rhode Island youth, why are they so reluctant to discuss their methods and the theories informing them?

      It stinks to high heaven. Thank you, Mrs. Solas, for your courage and determination.

    Agreed. Lawfare is simply warfare by other means. And make no mistake, we are at war with these cultural marxists. They believe they ‘own’ your children. Parents be damned.

    These cultural marxists infest all levels of the bureaucracy, and use your tax dollars against you while you’re left scrounging for private donations.

    Sue the school superintendent professionally and PERSONALLY. Hit ’em in the pocket book. HARD.

    Down below, JusticeDelivered | June 1, 2021 at 9:58 am, offered excellent advice:

    “Rhode Island has an anti SLAPP law.

    Rhode Island Anti-SLAPP – The Reporters Committee for …https://www.rcfp.org › anti-slapp-guide › rhode-island
    Rhode Island. Rhode Island has a strong anti-SLAPP law. It provides protection against lawsuits based on a person’s exercise of petition and free speech rights”

    JusticeDelivered in reply to irv. | June 2, 2021 at 9:37 am

    It looks like she is a lawyer, but apparently not practicing.

    I suggest using LexisNexis to do background checks on the belligerents, That may turn up stuff which can be used to their lives interesting.

    When I was fighting these kinds of issues, I always responded with a multi faceted attack.

You are on the front lines of a war that is unquestionably one of most difficult to win since our country came into being. Thank you for taking up the challenge, and by doing so, giving others an example to follow.

Eastwood Ravine | June 1, 2021 at 9:30 am

We needed a Trump second term to break the teachers’s unions and defund the Dept of Education.

    Sure. Just like Reagan did!

    bullhubbard in reply to Eastwood Ravine. | June 2, 2021 at 9:44 am

    I think DeSantis would be a more credible champion. I hope he runs for President in ’24. Rand Paul would be a good nominee, too, though he has a record of compromise that might not be what’s called for nowadays, regardless of the incessant hand-wringing by the shit-stain media and the uninformed about “loyal opposition.”

    The progressive left has brought us to this crisis, and their track record plainly illustrates the fact that their ideology of racial and social “justice” is impervious to compromise, or even reasoned discussion, which they reject as a matter of principle, logic and reason being characteristics of their monolithic Western White Devil.

    drednicolson in reply to Eastwood Ravine. | June 2, 2021 at 12:10 pm

    As much as our President-in-Exile deserves his second term, I think we’d be better served by Trump running for Florida’s new House seat, and endorsing DeSantis or another solid conservative for 2024.

    The meltdown that would follow Trump as Speaker would be almost as glorious as the one that followed Trump as President.

amatuerwrangler | June 1, 2021 at 9:32 am

In some states this is called SLAPP– Strategic Litigation Against Public Participation and is illegal. I freely admit total ignorance of RI law, however I would bet real money that our host here, the good professor, has great knowledge of it.

Keep in mind that the flak is heaviest over the target.

Please keep us updated. More people should do this.

DON’T BE A FOOL

STOP CALLING IT “ANTI-RACISM” – IT IS NEO-RACISM

They play sematic games on purpose. They want the HEADLINE “Parent tries to stop the School from Teaching Anti-Racism”. 95% of people do not read past the headline. They marginalize you – and you all fall for it. They play you for fools when you repeat their bullshit branding. They laugh at you every time you fall for their B.S. propaganda.

This is not a mistake on their part – it is well crafted propaganda techniques. They think through how an opponent will be portrayed in the media and they use a name or phrase that will will make any opponent look like a villain. For example “Black Lives Matter” – they chose that name on purpose. Opponents are smeared from the start by making it appear they think black lives don’t matter.

Call it what it is … “Neo-Racism”

It is a new version of racism – only tis time targeting whites. It is designed to be confusing and divisive. Even smart people fall for the bullshit branding. Many of the people who I know that support it say that they do so BECAUSE they are against racism (not thinking through the issue to realize they are actually supporting racism).

Make a conscious decision NOW to never refer to it as “anti-Racism” and tell your friends and family – everyone. CALL IT NEO-RACISM.

    JoAnne in reply to Ben Kent. | June 1, 2021 at 2:58 pm

    Amen! Excellent suggestion! They are a devious bunch,

    bullhubbard in reply to Ben Kent. | June 2, 2021 at 10:27 am

    This point is absolutely crucial if we are to gain any headway publicly against this evil (and I do not exaggerate in calling it so).

    “Neo-racism” is the precise term, and none of us in agreement here should call CRT anything else.

    It’s a good idea, too, to start calling SJWs SICOS (pronounced “sickos”) for Social Injustice Communists or Socialists, or something else more catchy.

    At any rate, adopting some of the tactics of the opposition may work to our advantage.

    Tangentially, regarding political propaganda, I would also add that the anti-neoracist contingent is well represented on YouTube (at least so far), and independent online content creators have a greater aggregate viewership than any of the Democratic Party Propaganda Cadre’s outlets (so-called “corporate” or “mainstream” or “dinosaur” media). The more we can call attention to the media’s collusion with the neoracist left, the better. In their fanatical, irrational, and sometimes outright insane opposition to the Trump Presidency, they have revealed themselves to be the professional liars, whores, and sycophants their tribe has always been, despite the thin veneer of respectability they’ve managed to accrue through the efforts of a handful of principled reporters.

    Well, that was a bit of a tangent/tirade . . .

    Anyway, we need more heroic citizens like Mrs. Solas to “take it to the streets” (to appropriate another expression from the left).

      carolmcl in reply to bullhubbard. | June 2, 2021 at 8:17 pm

      “It’s a good idea, too, to start calling SJWs SICOS (pronounced “sickos”) for Social Injustice Communists or Socialists, or something else more catchy.”
      I think I’d call them “psychos” instead of “sickos.”

      carolmcl in reply to bullhubbard. | June 2, 2021 at 8:19 pm

      But I love your idea and will use these alternate phrases.

Dusty Pitts | June 1, 2021 at 9:51 am

Why was it so hard to get a tour and see the curriculum in my own public school district?

Because they’re government schools, not public schools.

    Lucifer Morningstar in reply to Dusty Pitts. | June 1, 2021 at 9:57 am

    Because they are government indoctrination centers, not public schools.

    Fixed that for you.

    gibbie in reply to Dusty Pitts. | June 2, 2021 at 5:43 pm

    “Because they’re government schools, not public schools.”

    Why is it so hard to get otherwise intelligent conservatives to understand this?

It looks like right now all they’re planning to do is discuss suing you. That would include asking their lawyers what grounds, if any, exist for suing you, and brainstorming with the public to find such grounds. I assume the lawyers will start out saying they can’t think of any, but see if anyone can come up with an idea that might work, or at least avoid sanctions.

One note: It looks to me as if the statute only prevents them from asking for the reasons for your requests as a condition of fulfilling them. There’s nothing preventing them from demanding that you justify yourself so long as it’s not such a condition. So if they were to come up with some reason why you’re harming them they’d still have to fulfill your requests anyway, but could sue you as a complete separate matter. The hard part is coming up with that reason. Hence the meeting.

Irv says “countersue”. As Alice would put it, you can’t countersue before you’ve been sued. Unless you’ve got some grounds for suing them besides “They’re planning to sue me”.

Ditto for anti-SLAPP laws. First they have to file a suit, then you allege that it’s a SLAPP, and if a judge agrees with you it stops right there and you get damages. But without a suit from them there’s nothing for the judge to look at.

If they start harassing you that would be grounds for suing them, but simply calling a meeting to discuss you is not harassment. It’s annoying and embarrassing, but within their rights. After all, you are a pain in their nether regions. The first amendment protects their right to bitch about it.

    daniel_ream in reply to Milhouse. | June 1, 2021 at 11:06 am

    It looks like right now all they’re planning to do is discuss suing you.

    That was my read as well. I don’t think they’re serious about this; they know Ms. Solas is watching them and this is a silly attempt to intimidate her.

    Lucifer Morningstar in reply to Milhouse. | June 1, 2021 at 11:31 am

    If they start harassing you that would be grounds for suing them, but simply calling a meeting to discuss you is not harassment.

    Oh, it goes well beyond harassment or simply “discussing Solas and her ARPA request”. It’s a direct threat to Solas that she might be facing an expensive lawsuit if she doesn’t withdraw her legal public document requests.

    SeiteiSouther in reply to Milhouse. | June 1, 2021 at 12:07 pm

    (j) No public records shall be withheld based on the purpose for which the records are sought, nor shall a public body require, as a condition of fulfilling a public records request, that a person or entity provide a reason for the request or provide personally identifiable information about him/herself.

      Milhouse in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 1, 2021 at 4:24 pm

      Yes, that’s what I said. They can’t make her explain herself as a condition of fulfilling her requests. They can do so independent of that process, if they can think up a reason why she should have to. But they have to keep fulfilling her requests regardless.

    stevewhitemd in reply to Milhouse. | June 1, 2021 at 1:35 pm

    Agree for the most part, Milhouse. However, the discussion of whether to sue a private citizen who is asking questions and filing APRA requests certainly has a local color of harassment. It’s saying to the rest of the community, “Look at this troublesome person! Will no one rid us of this troublesome person!” One could easily imagine how other players in the local political community would take it upon themselves to harass this woman. Because of this the actions of the board smacks of an invitation to retaliation.

      Milhouse in reply to stevewhitemd. | June 1, 2021 at 4:26 pm

      That by itself isn’t harassment, it’s free speech. For a court to suppress it would violate the first amendment. If it becomes harassment then she can sue.

        JusticeDelivered in reply to Milhouse. | June 2, 2021 at 9:48 am

        Milhouse is right, that it does not rise to actionable level under the law. It is harassment, or more like a threat of harassment.

        bullhubbard in reply to Milhouse. | June 2, 2021 at 10:39 am

        The trouble is that what you call “free speech,” the presumably public discussion over whether or not to sue Mrs. Solas, is in effect a discussion over whether or not to use legal action to silence her. That, in itself, is a constitutionally protected right, the right to discuss how a publicly funded entity can take advantage of the legal system to silence a dissident who cannot possibly afford to fight them in court.

        “You get the justice you can pay for” is not a cliche for nothing.

    henrybowman in reply to Milhouse. | June 1, 2021 at 2:01 pm

    Sure, this is a blow-by-blow description of the actual fight. But there is nothing keeping this mother from having a lawyer attend this meeting and warning them beforehand that should they decide to sue her they will be hit with an anti-slapp suit so fast it will make their head spin, and the administrators will be sued by name, and not in their public capacity. You can do a lot of threatening before they actually sue you, and that may be all it takes.

      bullhubbard in reply to henrybowman. | June 2, 2021 at 10:43 am

      “There is nothing keeping this mother from having a lawyer attend this meeting and warning them beforehand that should they decide to sue her they will be hit with an anti-slapp suit so fast it will make their head spin, and the administrators will be sued by name, and not in their public capacity.”

      Sure, nothing other than the lawyer’s fee.

      Any lawyers out there willing to go to court for Mrs. Salas pro bono? I won’t hold my breath.

      The ACLU is on the side of neo-racists as far as I can tell.

        JusticeDelivered in reply to bullhubbard. | June 2, 2021 at 8:46 pm

        ACLU is an opportunistic POS. They chose not to take cases over wokeness, and in other cases I saw them sit on the sidelines, waiting until it was clear that we were winning the case, then they would issue a supporting position statement, followed by taking credit in press releases.

JusticeDelivered | June 1, 2021 at 9:58 am

Rhode Island has an anti SLAPP law.

Rhode Island Anti-SLAPP – The Reporters Committee for …https://www.rcfp.org › anti-slapp-guide › rhode-island
Rhode Island. Rhode Island has a strong anti-SLAPP law. It provides protection against lawsuits based on a person’s exercise of petition and free speech rights

Rhode Island State Anti-SLAPP — Public Participation Project
https://anti-slapp.org › rhode-island
Rhode Island has a good anti-SLAPP law. … R.I. GEN. LAWS § 9-33-2(d) provides for a SLAPPBack. It provides that a court shall award compensatory damages …

Organize opposition of the millage.

Your homeowners insurance probably has “Advertising Injury” coverage, if so tell the school board. They figure that they can bully, but if you have deep pockets via insurance, that takes away their advantage.

Join FOI-L, a list server with attorneys and journalists solely about Freedom of Information.

“Trumpkaren”.🤡

    henrybowman in reply to cgray451. | June 1, 2021 at 2:09 pm

    “Doodiehead.”

    Milhouse in reply to cgray451. | June 1, 2021 at 4:29 pm

    No. She is a parent at the school, and her child is being indoctrinated in evil. She is entitled to find out about it, to inform other people about it, and to organize to stop it.

Keep up the great work. And remember: Don’t let the bastards get you down.

Lucifer Morningstar | June 1, 2021 at 10:26 am

Sorry milhouse, not buying the bullshit you’re shoveling. Whether or not the school district sues is beside the point. This is a blatant attempt to use the threat of expensive legal action/legal process to pressure this Mother into withdrawing her legally submitted document requests.

The law is clear. The school district must provide the requested public documents. They cannot stonewall her or delay. They cannot use the threat of legal action/legal process to blackmail or pressure her into withdrawing her request.

Public Records Law (Access to Records):
§ 38-2-3. Right to inspect and copy records – Duty to maintain minutes of meetings – Procedures for access.:

http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/Statutes/TITLE38/38-2/38-2-3.HTM

§ 38-2-4. Cost.:

http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/Statutes/TITLE38/38-2/38-2-4.HTM

    SeiteiSouther in reply to Lucifer Morningstar. | June 1, 2021 at 10:50 am

    Agreed. There’s nothing wrong in setting up contingencies. Stop being pedantic, Milhouse.

      daniel_ream in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 1, 2021 at 11:08 am

      Yes, Milhouse, stop pointing out what the law actually says. What do you think this is, a legal blog or something?

        SeiteiSouther in reply to daniel_ream. | June 1, 2021 at 12:12 pm

        He’s actually wrong about the “It looks to me as if the statute only prevents them from asking for the reasons for your requests as a condition of fulfilling them. There’s nothing preventing them from demanding that you justify yourself so long as it’s not such a condition.”

        They can’t ask her to justify her reasons for the requests.

          DaveGinOly in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 1, 2021 at 2:36 pm

          They can ask all they want. You just don’t have to reply. They then can’t hold up the responsive documents based on your failure to reply. They have a duty to you, you have no duty to them. They are our servants. This is something they seem to have forgotten.

          daniel_ream in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 1, 2021 at 3:11 pm

          No, he’s not.

          First of all, he cannot be wrong about his own perceptions, or did you miss the part you quoted where it says “It looks to me […]”?

          Second, his point is that they can demand all they like, perfectly legally, as long as they don’t condition release of the document on the specific answers they get – which is to say, they could, in Milhouse’s opinion, withhold the documents until they get any answer whatsoever. It doesn’t prevent Ms. Solas from responding with “because I want them and it’s my right”, but it may work as a delaying tactic. If nothing else they can force her to spend money on a lawyer to force the issue.

          You can be pissy with Milhouse all you like, but I guarantee you the school board is thinking up reasons like this.

          Milhouse in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 1, 2021 at 4:41 pm

          Setei:

          They can’t ask her to justify her reasons for the requests.

          Sure they can. You’ve seen the law. You’ve even quoted it. Did you not bother reading it? It does not say that they can’t ask her to justify her reasons for the requests. All is says is that they can’t make that a condition of fulfilling them.

          Daniel:

          Second, his point is that they can demand all they like, perfectly legally, as long as they don’t condition release of the document on the specific answers they get – which is to say, they could, in Milhouse’s opinion, withhold the documents until they get any answer whatsoever.

          No, I don’t think they can do that. They can’t condition release of the documents on her providing a reason for her requests. If they want to know her reasons they have to demand that separately, but they have to go on fulfilling her requests regardless. And if they want to make her take notice of their demand they need to sue her, which means they first need to come up with a reason why she should have to. No such reason comes readily to mind; hence the meeting to try to think of one.

          JusticeDelivered in reply to SeiteiSouther. | June 2, 2021 at 9:56 am

          “They are our servants.”

          The minute they are elected their heads puff up, pressure on their brain impairs rational thought.

“The beatings will continue until morale is restored.

Lawfair is the Leftist way.
And anyone not think yet public schools are Leftist Seminaries?

American Human | June 1, 2021 at 11:07 am

Government entities do this sort of thing to regular citizens to get them to stop and reconsider if it is worth the hassle. The same with gun laws. I had to spend about $200 just to get the state of MD’s permission to buy a gun. It took weeks. Then, when I got the little card giving me permission, I went to buy a gun and still had to wait a week to pick it up. Then when the email showed up, it told me that I wasn’t disapproved. Not, “Hey, you’re approved!” but “Dog-gone-it, we couldn’t find a reason to prevent you from buying this gun so fine you’re not disapproved, just go buy your gun you zealot.”
This was all to try and discourage me from buying a gun by putting up so many roadblocks I’d just get discouraged and quit trying.

    Formerly known as Skeptic in reply to American Human. | June 2, 2021 at 2:12 pm

    “I had to spend about $200 just to get the state of MD’s permission to buy a gun. It took weeks.”

    In MA it took $200 and eight months. As they say, the process is the punishment.

Nobody noticed the contradictory messages of “we don’t use ‘boys’ and ‘girls'” vs. “Happy Mother’s Day”?

The Marxists consider her a subversive counterrevolutionary who should be deal with accordingly.

If they cannot silence her by suing her they’ll try to hang a ‘white supremacist’ label on her. Then she can expect a visit from our political police — the American Stasi, AKA the FBI.

You need to reach out to No Left Turn in Education. They are the largest grassroots organization fighting this all over the country. noleftturn.us and No Left Turn in Education on Facebook. [email protected].

    henrybowman in reply to Sodade. | June 1, 2021 at 2:12 pm

    Also, contact fightforschools.com. These are the people who are currently beating the Loudoun County school board about the head and shoulders for the same brand of arrogance. I don’t see anything in their charter as they describe it on their website that limits them to Loudon County or Virginia. They are not a deductible nonprofit, so they probably have the freedom to range anywhere they want to go.

Nicole,

You have my respect for your courage in asking for information and answers from the School Board on a subject that they prefer remains hidden.

As with others, I recommend contacting one of the public interest law firms/groups who have both expertise and familiarity with the many obstacles that will be put in your path. A funding site would be a good idea. Perhaps LI could do a targeted fund raiser for this?

    JusticeDelivered in reply to CommoChief. | June 1, 2021 at 1:06 pm

    She should put up a web page, the school will probably threaten her. that would make this a 1st Amendment issue. When small numbers of people are fighting well healed people, a key tactic is to get larger, well established entities to take up the issue.

It seems to me that the school board has just given you a bully pulpit. They are advertising the fact that they are trying to intimidate you to prevent the exposure of their racist curriculum. Now you are getting some well-deserved national attention the support you deserve.

It’s time for a huge number of residents to show up at the board meeting and let the board members know that this type of racism and intimidation will not be tolerated.

Why should this essential information on curriculum even require parents to file formal requests (and pay for them) in the first place? Why wasn’t this sent to the parents! Since when is this secret?

    I think this question should be asked at the hearing as well as why the parents are only now being invited to participate in this process.

    That’s the opportunity in all of this for the parents. Let these Marxist administrators know that parents demand accountability for those who claim some kind of right to “educate” their children in secret.

    DaveGinOly in reply to Pasadena Phil. | June 1, 2021 at 2:42 pm

    Considering the nature and importance of a curriculum to a school district, it shouldn’t be necessary to conduct an exhaustive search of electronic storage systems to locate it. With the search costing $15/hr., if it’s billable in half-hour increments, the search should cost $7.50 for the (literally) two minutes it takes to locate the document, attach it to an email, and send it to her.

healthguyfsu | June 1, 2021 at 12:24 pm

Hot mama on a mission!

If you really wanted to go all in, let them sue and then get your damages. Lure them into the trap.

LibraryGryffon | June 1, 2021 at 12:39 pm

As someone who has taken on their local school board, I’d recommend pulling your child from that school system as soon as possible. Otherwise they *will* be a target for retribution.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to LibraryGryffon. | June 1, 2021 at 1:02 pm

    Good point, they did that with my children when I was raising hell, I pulled my children and then killed a $40 million millage twice in one year. I did rub their nose in it. There is a staggering amount of incompetence and arrogance in schools, mostly administrators. I did tar and feather a teacher over it, and made sure that other teachers in the district knew that she caused that she caused me to do so..

      LibraryGryffon in reply to JusticeDelivered. | June 1, 2021 at 3:16 pm

      A few years later, after my kids were safely away from the mercy of the local school board, at the town meeting where we were voting on the next year’s school budget, and were facing a cut in state funds of millions, I proposed cutting the school budget by less than 10% (which was still only half of the proposed state funding cut). One of the school board members apparently, shall we say, suggested I was into fellatio. I was told this by a friend who was on the board too. We were talking after the meeting and she said to me: “I think that woman must have tourette’s or something. She called you a “c***s*****”.”
      The foul mouthed board member also tended to wear a hair band with cat’s ears on it during board meetings. Very professional. /sarc

        artichoke in reply to LibraryGryffon. | June 2, 2021 at 1:47 pm

        I guess she was projecting, as Dems often do.

          LibraryGryffon in reply to artichoke. | June 2, 2021 at 3:57 pm

          Probably. She’s definitely not one of the brighter bulbs in the box. At least she didn’t have the stupidity to tell me that the building my kid was in at the time needed to be shut down because it didn’t meet the fire codes. I asked for more info at the school office the next day to be told that some rooms couldn’t hear the fire alarms when they went off. But, I was assured, when they went off, the office sent a runner to tell them. (!!!)

          Half an hour later I was on the phone with the local fire marshal who was very intrigued to hear that. And half an hour after that I got a call from the school office to tell me that I had been given outdated info, and the issue had been fixed over the summer. When I checked back in with the fire marshal, I found out that was a lie.

          Needless to say, I publicized all the info I had been given, including the “misinformation” which seemed designed to convince people that the one building had to be closed down the following summer for safety (what about the rest of the current school year?) and didn’t exactly make myself friends with the faction who wanted to consolidate middle schools. I just didn’t want my child to attend FIVE different schools in nine years without moving once. (Three elementary schools due to closures and redistricting, and then two middle schools.)

This remind me of the case of our No Left Turn in Education (NLTE) chapter head in Maine. He was on Tucker last Thursday and was also featured last week in the Daily Wire and Britebart. https://video.foxnews.com/v/6256358866001?fbclid=IwAR0BvAnsdFDvX8NGoI3RYfIyjL7igpJUQ4bV8AEGuDblMa1of5Skd-pa9yA#sp=show-clips.
You are not alone!!! Contact NLTE so we can assist you with your fight. You and anyone who wants to fight the radical indoctrination in K-12 can go to our website and join the movement https://noleftturn.us We have chapters in 22 states and counting!!! Our strength is in our numbers!!!

You shouldn’t have to file records requests to get this public information in the first place. It should be readily and freely available on the school district’s website. The fact that it isn’t made available and that they are seemingly trying to make it difficult to access certainly makes it appear as though there is something in the curriculum they are trying to hide from the parents. They seem to not want to have parents involved in the education of their children, which makes it even more important for parents to be involved and take an active interest in their children’s education.

If this is a proper and appropriate part of the school curriculum, why are they being so secretive about it? Why does it need to be hidden from the parents AND the taxpayers that fund the schools?

The fact that the information is being hidden suggests that there is something nefarious about it.

Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

texansamurai | June 1, 2021 at 2:36 pm

bless you, ms solas–you do your family honor and are an an asset to your community

like the idea of taking a qualified lawyer along with you to the meeting

lawyers have children too

steady as she goes

Too bad the “defund” movement is after the wrong agency.

Public education is an enemy of people.

I hope you are homeschooling your child, or have transferred to a private school.

The agenda item to publicly discuss suing you is not only to dissuade you, but to incite the community against you. Where the curriculum is rooted in anti-homophobia and anti-racism, you will almost certainly be labeled racist and homophobic. Accordingly, I hope you have a neighborhood watch chapter and a security system for your home – specifically an alarm system and security cameras all around your home.

Your child if still in public school may also be subjected to interviews by school counselors / psychiatrists to find cause to further harass you. A daily talk with your child will disclose whether the school is applying any pressure to him/her.

Here in Florida, the agency / record custodian cannot force the person making the records request to identify themselves.

The agency / record custodian cannot demand payment in a check, credit or debit card either. They must accept cash.

This is not to say that the records law are the same in Rhode Island, but if they don’t know who you are, they cannot even entertain the notion of suing anyone.

thalesofmiletus | June 1, 2021 at 4:02 pm

Critical Race Theory is the new gospel religion that’s so wonderful it must be practiced clandestinely. Got it.

Nicole-

In Oregon some cities/counties pulled the same stunt on going after public records requestors. The government would sue for cash and many recipients would simply blow it off and the government would win in a default judgement. In the absence of an actual case with merit, they will still win if you don’t show up. They may get smacked for your attorney fees for trying, but that’s the cost of doing business in their eyes. It’s tax payer money they are using after all. Since the public doesn’t mind their current insanity, who is going to balk at them suing you?

Also- THANK YOU for doing this. I am having similar battles with our school district on race based stuff. Others simply pull their kids out and go to private schools, but when we do that, it’s a surrender and the crazy people win. I intend to keep my kid in public schools and cause them as much discomfort as I can. There are staff members and faculty and other parents who will be left to fight against even worse odds if you leave.

FortesFortunaJuvat | June 1, 2021 at 4:30 pm

Counter sue.

What if you show up at their meeting and ridicule their attempt to sue you? Don’t give away any legal arguments you might use that aren’t obvious, but it gives you a public platform to discuss what you’re asking and to criticize their CRT curriculum, in the way of justifying your requests.

This seems like a PR blunder by the district. Jam it back up their %^&**(

    Andy in reply to artichoke. | June 2, 2021 at 3:45 pm

    Our school board makes it deliberately impossible to speak at the meetings. Waste of time IMO. Unless you go all BLM/Antifa and disrupt it like a savage. Most of us prefer to not define ourselves in that way.

      LibraryGryffon in reply to Andy. | June 2, 2021 at 3:59 pm

      If you can’t speak at the school board meeting, a town council meeting might be as good (if not better) a place, since in most places they are in charge of the school board’s budget (bottom line if not internal ones) and might not appreciate being on the hook for expensive litigation which they will assuredly lose.

I respectfully suggest that you are attempting to fix a system which cannot and should not be fixed: America’s best example of totalitarian socialism. You would be more effective if you used your talent, resources, and energy to enable your children and others children to escape the government schools.

I’m not sure why people do not understand this. Perhaps someone could explain it to me.

    vinnymeyer in reply to gibbie. | June 1, 2021 at 9:14 pm

    Because for one, the resources that support this come from us. It’s OUR money. If it’s going to be spent, as a parent I want a day in how, where, and on what.

    Second, how would it be more effective, as a single isolated parent, to invest that energy in creating a parallel system for our own children, while still having to work to pay for the system that is indoctrinating our kids with this leftist BS?

    In any movement, a small percentage steer the movement while a large percentage follow. Standing up and opposing the mess may encourage other taxpaying families to also stand up to change or “fix” the system. You will have a very hard time convincing them to do it alone.

    Someday if I have grandchildren, I will offer my children to home school them. Most families can’t do that.

    Ideally, yes, blow it up and start over. Problem is, it’s never gonna happen.

    Sorry, because I agree with you in theory.. Just don’t see a way to actually make it a reality.

      Bdkay in reply to vinnymeyer. | June 2, 2021 at 5:25 pm

      Winning such a fight will take time, money and energy that is best devoted to your children. While the misuse of a public trust is an egregious abuse, the simple fact of the matter is that you are vastly outgunned, outspent, and outlasted by a bureaucracy that has demonstrated it will stop at nothing to thwart you. A victory here, while perhaps possible, will cost you everything including the time and energy to raise and educate your children in the way you desire, which is the whole point. Don’t take your eyes off the ball. Your child is more important than winning.

        gibbie in reply to Bdkay. | June 2, 2021 at 5:55 pm

        Bdkay, Thank you for your excellent explanation.

        The question is whether you want to fight a battle to modify one detail of America’s best example of totalitarian socialism, or do you want to save children from that wicked system?

        Additionally, if one could totally wrest control of the government schools from the hands of the leftists, then one would just be the next totalitarian.

          vinnymeyer in reply to gibbie. | June 2, 2021 at 7:01 pm

          One of the reasons they’ve gotten as far as they have is because there hasn’t been any significant push back. Maybe it is too late, and we should have started pushing back twenty years ago. Even so, even if you have only a small effect, it’s multiplied by what may be hundreds of kids.

All of it is taxpayer-funded and every bit of it should be public record. The question is, what are the communists hiding?

Citizens elected to school committees are politically correct cowards with teachers unions. My sister-in-law has been a teacher for over 30 years, and she shares what has been going on from the inside. Teachers unions have been taken over by leftist LGBT feminists and pushing their agenda via this type of indoctrination all over the country for at least the past twenty years. She talks about gender selection days where kids get to pick what sex they want to be for the day. It is horrible, this is not teaching our children anything useful.
Keep up the fight – use their tactics against them. Sue the school committee first naming each member separately.

    Sternverbs in reply to eddiejoe56. | June 2, 2021 at 9:51 am

    Unions have been neither productive nor constructive for the last 100 years. Now, they are simply political tools used by Marxists to destroy America.

Ty Professor Jacobson for posting this. I was traveling all day yesterday and missed it.

God Speed Ms. Solas, I am certain that you got some good ideas from the comments.. You are amazing. Truly. As to that meeting, I hope there will be a large and vocal group of parents, or taxpayers that will show up with you.

It seemes that there are laws in place to protect you from their implied threat. What a terrible shame that you should need them.. terrible.

Be strong! Thank you so much for your bravery and your action! The School Committee’s response shows a sad deflection through the accusatory use of the term racism and hate. As parents and citizens it is our job to question. The education system should encourage questions, critical thinking and open discussion. Educators and leaders should be scrutinized with the same vigor and under the same microscope as law enforcement as they are entrusted with what is most valuable and precious-our children and our future. Questions and requests for true equality does not equal racism and hate and it is time to stand up! Thank you!!!!!

Don’t file one lawsuit ,,, file Individuals lawsuits against each and every school committee member, principle, superintendent and anyone else who stood in your way. That will have them shaking in their Nazi Boots !!!

“Never give in, never, never, never.” – Winston Churchill

When faced with name calling, like “hater” and “racist,” demand two things: A definition and how it applies in your case. Make them embarrass themselves by putting the effort back on them. What, who, when, where, why, and how can be used effectively.
.

Nothing that happens at a public school should be secret. Nothing that happens at a private school should be secret from parents.

conservativeprof | June 2, 2021 at 12:48 pm

Determined lady. Bravo for her. Disgusting response from school district indicating their contempt for parents and taxpayers.

My daughters attended both charter and neighborhood public schools in CO. Charter schools were parent focused with excellent response to requests and open dialog with parents. Neighborhood public schools were rather guarded especially when parents complained about poor instruction. The difference in instruction is motivation with charter school teachers lacking tenure and charter schools lacking permanence (determined every year by enrollment). Public school teachers, even the best ones, were often less motivated due to tenure. No competitive pressures indicates less innovation. Dramatic differences regarding response to poor instruction. Neighborhood public schools shut down criticisms about poor instruction even a foreign language teacher who was not fluent in the foreign language. Soccer moms, wake up. Demand accountability from neighborhood publich schools.

    There is a completely logical reason why the boards of government schools are “rather guarded”. They are in charge of “the one best system”. They are supposed to keep groups of parents with diametrically opposed needs happy. This is an impossible job, so they try to avoid releasing information. This is true of all government bureaucracies – why would anyone expect anything different from schools run by government bureaucracies?

    The problem is that when it comes to education, you are tinkering with things which directly affect people’s children. Since people have strong convictions about what is good or bad for their children, a school board will constantly have significant groups of parents furious with them.

    Make it possible for parents to choose appropriate schools for their children.

    If you are a parent, examine your priorities.

Colonel Travis | June 2, 2021 at 1:03 pm

This CRT BS needs to be destroyed.

“numerous attorneys with whom I’ve consulted cannot figure out the basis of a claim against me”

I’m not an attorney (nor have I ever played one on TV) but I would be interested to know what would be the basis for any lawsuit.

I don’t see any basis for a lawsuit–they know it and their attorneys know it–this is all about intimidating her to stop and go away–if they sue, there should be a countersuit–the discovery would be interesting–most of these sleazy local politicians can’t survive the light of day

Lady, do you have anything better to do with your time? It sounds like you’re interested more in a private school anyway so why bother going through all that trouble? If you’re more conservative then go with a private school. No wonder they don’t want to respond to you. Pick your battles. It’s kindergarten for Christ’s sake. Is your 5 year old really gonna give a crap about all this?

JusticeDelivered | June 2, 2021 at 10:06 pm

I would add, that pushing this on our children and grandchildren is completely unacceptable. Trying to limit our brightest children in HS to suave egos of dull people is not only unacceptable, but also will severely damage America’s long term competiveness.

Just imagine if you put all that time, money, and effort into homeschooling your child. Your child could avoid government programming, bullies, drugs, depression, teen pregnancy, possible shootings, and even cause for suicide. win/win

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