LAMARQUE, TX (FOX 26) - LaMarque ISD is fighting back. The school district has filed a lawsuit against the state in an effort to keep from shutting down.
“The law is clear. The commissioner can't close a district if they're academically acceptable in the current year and in the current year LaMarque ISD is academically acceptable,” explains LaMarque ISD Attorney Chris Tritico.
The Texas Education Agency says finances and academics in LaMarque ISD are so poor the state is shutting down the district. LaMarque ISD’s lawsuit says it should not have to close.
”Without a doubt they should not. This district, in a matter of just under two years, has raised their fund balance from $14,000 to $6,000,000 and this year this ratings period they were academically acceptable.
There is no legal basis for the commissioner to do what he's doing,” adds Tritico.
Texas City ISD, according to the TEA, will acquire the more than 2,000 students when LaMarque closes.
“I went there myself so I know from personal experience. I really don't know about LaMarque. I didn't go to LaMarque High School. Texas City ISD has a wonderful education program,” says father of two Demaris McCall.
The Texas Education Commissioner is expected to name a Board of Managers and interim superintendent this week to help close LaMarque ISD.
”The district is not claiming there weren't problems but since 2011 they've entirely replaced the school board. They've replaced their administrative staff. They have a new superintendent. They brought in professional business people to help with the business side. The district has seen nothing but steady growth,” explains Tritico.
There's a Temporary Injunction hearing December 29, 2015 in Galveston to try to stop the commissioner from closing the district.