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RI Mom Nicole Solas Sues School District Over Secret Meetings

RI Mom Nicole Solas Sues School District Over Secret Meetings

“the law requires that “[e]very meeting of all public bodies shall be open to the public”

Parents are making a real difference in education right now. Nicole Solas is proof.

The Goldwater Institute reports:

Rhode Island Mom Sues School District Over Secret Meetings

Closed to the public—parents not welcome.

That’s the message the South Kingstown School Committee sent Rhode Island mom Nicole Solas when she tried to attend a meeting of the school district’s taxpayer-funded Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) Advisory Board before enrolling her daughter in kindergarten. Today, the Goldwater Institute filed a lawsuit in Rhode Island Superior Court to defend Nicole’s rights and hold the school district accountable for conducting public business in secret—in violation of the state’s Open Meetings Act.

Last May, Nicole asked to attend meetings where the South Kingstown BIPOC Advisory Board made policy recommendations that affected the school district’s students, including her daughter. The Board’s weekly meetings were slated to involve discussions about district policies regarding curriculum, hiring, discipline, and accountability, among other practices.

Nicole’s simple request shouldn’t have been an issue. After all, Rhode Island’s Open Meetings Act was enacted to ensure that “public business be performed in an open and public manner and that the citizens be advised of and aware of the performance of public officials and the deliberations and decisions that go into the making of public policy.” Moreover, the law requires that “[e]very meeting of all public bodies shall be open to the public.”

Yet the chairperson of the Board denied Nicole’s request, and School Committee personnel ignored further attempts from Nicole to reach them. But Rhode Island law makes clear that because the Board has “advisory power” over a subject of significant public interest—discussed during regular and recurring meetings that include public officials—and because it receives public funds for these activities, it is a “public body” whose meetings should be open to the public.

This is not the first time that the School Committee has tried to hide its activity from parents. When Nicole previously requested public information about what her daughter would be learning, the Committee evaded large portions of her request, threatened to sue her, and eventually tried to charge her $74,000 to access public information.

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Comments


 
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JackinSilverSpring | August 4, 2022 at 8:46 am

I fail to understand why parents are putting up with this nonsense. Their taxes pay for the schools and what they say should be paramount. If the school boards refuse to listen to parents, they should vote for a new board. If that fails they should consider private schools even with the financial burdens those bring, or home schooling. The schools at all levels apparently forgotten that their mission is to educate and not to brainwash.


     
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    healthguyfsu in reply to JackinSilverSpring. | August 4, 2022 at 11:26 pm

    Parents should not have to pay for private schools and surrender our taxpayer funded education just to avoid indoctrination. I call foul on your bs attempt to dissuade those like Solas with the real stones to fight.

    Besides, private education is even MORE vulnerable to indoctrination being unbound by most education law and dealing with hijacked accreditors.


       
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      gibbie in reply to healthguyfsu. | August 5, 2022 at 12:02 am

      healthguyfsu seems to have a stake in the government schools – America’s best example of totalitarian socialism since their beginning.

      He is against private education because it is “unbound” – in other words “free” – and “dealing with hijacked accreditors” – in other words accreditors who haven’t been hijacked by the leftists.

      What is your stake in the government schools?


       
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      JackinSilverSpring in reply to healthguyfsu. | August 5, 2022 at 10:54 am

      You didn’t read my comment correctly. I advised to try to rework the system as is. Only if that failed should parents consider private schools.


         
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        gibbie in reply to JackinSilverSpring. | August 5, 2022 at 1:03 pm

        JSS, Normally I agree with you, but not this time. The government school system is a failure as designed. It was instituted to indoctrinate the children of Irish Catholic immigrants into Protestantism. That’s why we have lots of Catholic private schools.

        Education necessarily involves indoctrination into a worldview. The only question is “whose worldview”? The current answer is the secular, leftist, woke worldview. People like healthguyfsu, and sadly, LI, want it to be their worldview. This is totalitarianism. The government has no business making worldview decisions for parents and children.

        Parents should remove their children from the government schools.


 
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Dimsdale | August 4, 2022 at 7:59 pm

You don’t hide things unless you have something to hide.

Sunshine is the best disinfectant. Particularly for cockroach leftists poisoning our schools…

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