Pushers of the charter school amendment must be desperate!
Blurring the line between public officials and private
citizens, state Attorney General Sam Olens wrote:
Local school boards do not have the legal authority to expend funds
or other resources to advocate or oppose the ratification of a
constitutional amendment by the voters. They may not do this
directly or indirectly through associations to which they may
Jim Galloway wrote yesterday for the AJC in
Sam Olens orders local school boards to stay out of charter school fight,
That means organizations like the Georgia School Boards Association,
and perhaps, the Georgia School Superintendents Association, would
be barred from speaking out against the proposed constitutional
And would that include organizations like PAGE,
a local middle school teacher used last week?
What about that teacher, or
Dr. Troy Davis, speaking a few weeks earlier,
both on their own time?
Olens’ letter would apply to what
the VDT said was in the VBOE and LCBOE joint resolution,
at least the part about “The resolution explicitly states that the boards
are asking voters to not support the Constitutional Amendment relative
to state charter schools.”
But what does Olens mean, duly elected local school boards don’t
have authority to express opinions about educational matters
that would directly affect the people who elected them?
Why has Sam Olens suddenly gotten religion about this now,
after he was silent last year when both VBOE and LCBOE adopted
resolutions against the school “unification” referendum?
Where was he when both boards of education hosted numerous
forums opposing consolidation?
Will he next be telling the Valdosta City Council it can’t
pass a resolution opposing a referendum?
What exactly is the difference between that elected body and
an elected school board as far as expressing such an opinion?
And all of those resolutions were non-binding opinions.
Will Sam Olens next be telling the VDT it can’t
editorialize against the charter school amendment?
How desperate are the pushers of the charter school amendment?