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Submitted by on 1, February 18, 2010 – 3:39 pm2 Comments

A pair of Alameda parents is suing the school district and school board, claiming the board violated the Brown Act by voting to readopt the anti-gay bullying Lesson 9 and to adopt accompanying literature that wasn’t included in staff’s original recommendation.

Kerry Cook and Serena Dietrich filed a suit in Alameda County Superior Court today that seeks to nullify the school board’s December 8 vote to readopt Lesson 9 and to adopt a Links to Literature guide. Attorney Peter Hagberg said the district added the Links guide at the last minute and that it didn’t have readoption of Lesson 9 on the agenda for the December 8 meeting.

The board voted 4-1, with Trustee Trish Herrera Spencer casting the “no” vote, to adopt the items until a specific book list was generated to help the district curtail bullying of a broader spectrum of students.

Cook and Dietrich’s attorney, Peter Hagberg, could not immediately be reached for comment. Hagberg wrote the district a letter on January 4 asking them to rescind the vote and then told school board members at their February 9 meeting that he intended to sue if they did not do so.

The district’s attorney, Danielle Houck, said the district hasn’t been served with the suit yet but that it doesn’t believe it violated the Brown Act. “The District does not believe that it violated the Brown Act and intends to vigorously defend the litigation. We have tendered the complaint to our insurance carrier and expect that Lou Leone and Katie Alberts of Stubbs & Leone, the same lawyers who successfully represented the District in the Lesson 9 litigation, will defend the District in this litigation,” Houck wrote in response to a request for comment on the suit.

The case number is RG10498999. Stay tuned for the full story Friday.


  • Kenny says:

    I, for one, am soooo tired of the litigious nature of our society. People forget that we ELECT representatives to make such decisions for us. If we don’t like the decisions those representatives make we can replace them with someone else in the next election. THAT is the way we structured our government. Much of the huge budget problems our state has and the recent ballot expenses our city has are due to “ballot initiatives” and civil suits that continue to drain our resources. If Kerry Cook and Serena Dietrich want a different outcome from the School Board then let THEM run for election or let them campaign for someone THEY like, but they should stop wasting our tax dollars on issues upon which the community has clearly already been heard.
    In other words… STOP WASTING MY TIME AND MONEY!!!

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