Gardendale BOE tells court no racial motive to create city syste - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Gardendale BOE tells court no racial motive to create city system

Source: WBRC video Source: WBRC video

The Gardendale Board of Education filed its response with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals three weeks before a deadline, asking the court to reverse a ruling that creation of the system was racially motivated.

The board sums up the 126 page filing with a basic statement: “Gardendale seeks to create a smaller, local school system to provide better schools for children of all races.”

“Gardendale has done nothing to violate the United States Constitution, the laws of the State of Alabama. We are simply trying to form our own school system like dozens of others have done in Alabama and throughout the nation,” Gardendale school board president Michael Hogue told WBRC.

The board and attorneys representing black school children who oppose Gardendale’s separation from the Jefferson County school system  have also filed an appeal of Judge Madline Haikala’s ruling that allows Gardendale to separate its elementary schools from Jefferson County, then eventually the middle and high schools under certain conditions.

The plaintiff’s oppose a separate school system based on Judge Haikala’s ruling finding racial motives for creating a new system.

The board’s filing ask the appeals court to reverse that finding and the judgement of a constitutional violation. The brief ask the court to return the case to the U.S. District court with instructions to grant Gardendale’s motion to separate the full school system.

“The filing shows Gardendale is an open and inclusive community,” Hogue told WBRC.  “The evidence is very clear.”

Hogue said the filing ahead of the deadline was designed to expedite the case.

“Time is of the essence,” he said. “Residents have been patient for a long time to get our schools underway.”

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