PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- The lawyer for several Hope High School students has filed a motion in Superior Court that would force the city to restore the teacher planning time cut by the school district this fall.
Miriam Weizenbaum, the students' lawyer, is asking the court to enforce the state education commissioner's decision. In September, education commissioner Deborah A. Gist ruled that the Providence School Department must restore 84 minutes of common planning time to the teachers' weekly schedule.
The lawyer for the city of Providence immediately appealed that decision with the state Department of Education, which is expected to schedule a hearing before the Rhode Island Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education.
According to Weizenbaum, the law states that plaintiffs must first exhaust their appeal before the agency, in this case, the Department of Education, before seeking redress in court. But there is an exception: If the plaintiffs can prove that further delays are hurting them.