Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

Logan board to join lawsuit


October 7, 2020

The Logan Municipal Schools board unanimously voted last week during a special meeting to join as a plaintiff in a not-yet-filed lawsuit against New Mexico Education Secretary Ryan Stewart and the state’s Public Education Department.

The board didn’t openly discuss details of the potential lawsuit during its meeting.

Logan superintendent Dennis Roch stated in an email later in the week the district would join in a lawsuit against Stewart and the PED filed by the Gallup-McKinley County Schools. He added it likely would be filed in Santa Fe District Court.

Roch did not elaborate on the grievances against Stewart and the PED.

The lawsuit hadn’t been filed Monday, according to online court records.

The board met via videoconference Sept. 28 with attorney Dan Castille of the Cuddy & McCarthy law firm of Santa Fe and went immediately into a nearly 90-minute executive session to discuss potential litigation.

When open session resumed, the board voted to join the lawsuit as a plaintiff with several contingencies, including a penalty-free opt-out clause and a maximum cost of no more than $1,000 to the district.

The motion, as read by board member Tom Humble, included “an assurance that Logan Municipal Schools not be portrayed as critical of the content of the rules as much as the process by which they were improperly promulgated.”

Roch and Logan board members had openly chafed in recent months over what they perceived as onerous or arbitrary state regulations for school districts regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

An email last week to Castille requesting comment was not answered.


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