Thursday, June 18, 2015

Breaking News: Appellate Court Denies Hoboken BOE Motion for a Stay Concerning Hola Expansion

On Wednesday, June 17, 2015 the Appellate Court of the State of New Jersey denied the Hoboken Board of Education's motion to stay in a decision impacting the 7th and 8th grade expansion for the Hola Dual Language School in Hoboken, NJ. This marks the third straight legal defeat of the Hoboken Board of Education in their attempt to stop the 7th and 8th grade expansion of this award winning School:
As a model program district, the school (Hola) will serve as a resource for other school districts in the northern region and neighboring areas and will enable educators to witness firsthand exemplary practices in world languages instruction and assessment. It will also enable administrators and teachers to dialog about issues of mutual concern, the discuss the potential for future collaboration regarding curriculum development projects, or professional development initiatives. -NJ Dept. of Education 
Having lost twice previously before the State of New Jersey's Department of Education (also, click here), the Hoboken Board of Education filed an emergency motion with the Appellate Court to stay (the act of temporarily stopping a judicial proceeding through the order of a court) the 7th and 8th grade expansion while the issue is litigated in court. On Wednesday June 17, the court denied that request for a stay. 
In order to obtain a stay, a plaintiff (the Hoboken Board of Education in this situation, the party that initiates a lawsuit) must show that it is likely to win on the merits when the broader case is litigated before the Appellate Court, and must also show that more harm will come to it (the Hoboken Board of Education) than the defendant (Hola) if there is no stay. The decision on Wednesday suggests that the Appellate Court found the Hoboken Board of Education's arguments unpersuasive toward the merits and the harm
It is unclear at this point whether or if the Hoboken Board of Education will end its litigation at this juncture. Should they continue with their litigation, the next step would be a full hearing before the Appellate Court.  This process could take a number of months, come at some cost, and will likely assure continued unease within certain segments of the community. That being said, the continuation of litigation is certainly within the legal rights and options of the plaintiffs.