Fact Finder: School Board Kept in the Dark on Legal Issues at WCSD

Reported by: Joe Hart
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Updated: 6/30/2013 4:18 pm
RENO, Nev. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) - There are new developments in a case that is raising questions about the balance of power when it comes to the superintendent and the board of trustees for the Washoe County School District.

Members of the school board say they are frustrated about not having access to any of the information  regarding the case of Larry Dailey, the parent of a special needs student who was arrested on June 11 for trespassing when he showed up at a school board meeting.  They say that's because the school district's lawyer, Randy Drake, reports to the superintendent and not the board of trustees.

We spoke with school board member Dave Aiazzi. He says it's time for the current arrangement to change since the board of trustees is ultimately in charge.

"They work for us.  We're supposed to support them in what they do but it's at our discretion.   And the trustees are the ones who are in charge of the school district, not the superintendent and not the attorneys.  We're the ones that said, we want the job. And that's who the voters voted to do that job," Aiazzi told News 4.

Aiazzi says if the board is not successful in getting this change, they'll consider hiring their own attorney and that would come at taxpayers' expense.

We checked with the school district and asked if Superintendent Pedro Martinez supports this proposal to have the school district attorney report to the board instead of him.

Martinez told us, "The board of trustees has the legal right to ask for separate counsel to represent the board on specific issues. I look forward to our continuing discussions and exchange of ideas on this issue at future public meetings."

The issue will be discussed at the next Washoe County School Board meeting in July.
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tonysam - 6/26/2013 7:55 PM
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It's taken the Board of Trustees THIS long to figure out WCSD is a law unto itself? They never raised a stink about this before and would just rubberstamp everything administrators did regardless if they followed the law.
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