- Associated Press - Friday, August 15, 2014

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A state judge Friday refused a temporary injunction sought against state education officials in an effort to block implementation of the Common Core education standards in Louisiana.

WAFB-TV reports (https://bit.ly/1pxwSOq ) District Judge Tim Kelley heard the case Friday and Louisiana Superintendent of Education John White testified. Kelley then called for a recess and announced his decision when all parties returned to the courtroom.

Kelley denied a request from 17 state legislators to halt implementation of the standards, saying they failed to demonstrate the likelihood they would succeed if the trial would proceed on the merits of the case. However, The Advocate reports (https://bit.ly/1phZnz3 ), Kelley stressed the case is not over and that he would consider a request for a permanent injunction against Common Core.

The lawmakers sought a temporary injunction to block the rollout of the Common Core academic standards, which are grade-by-grade benchmarks of what students should learn in English and math. They are supposed to take effect for the 2014-15 school year, with assessments scheduled for next spring.

The suit contends the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and the state Department of Education failed to follow the Administrative Procedures Act, which critics say was a required step that would have allowed crucial public input.

The lawmakers charge that the proposed rules should have been published in the Louisiana Register, as other revised school standards were handled, and time given for public input before BESE finalized the action.

White and Chas Roemer, president of BESE, claim the lawsuit is off the mark because education officials were not required to do what the state lawmakers are alleging.

White has said state law requires the department to establish content standards and for BESE to approve them. He has said the action was in line with the way the board handles most issues.

“Today’s ruling allows teachers and students to continue raising expectations in Louisiana. Our students are just as smart and capable as any in America. We’ve been working for four years to teach them to the highest standards in our country. Today’s ruling continues that progress,” White said in a statement after Kelley’s ruling.

On Monday, Judge Todd Hernandez will consider arguments in a separate lawsuit filed by parents and teachers who have sued Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Their lawsuit alleges Jindal violated the Louisiana Constitution by issuing a series of executive orders aimed at undermining Common Core. BESE has voted to join in the effort against the governor.

Jindal once supported the standards as improving student preparation for college and careers, but now opposes them as a federal intrusion in state education policy.

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