Monday, January 14, 2008

VIDEO ON DEMAND*: Free Speech FOI Hearing Taped Jan. 4


In Technicolor

Hearing focuses on suppression of write-in ballots
that elected Avery Doninger Secretary of the Class of 2008
at Lewis Mills High School in Burlington and the hiding of legal bills
funded by taxpayers in ongoing civil rights litigation.

Freedom of Information Commission Hearing:
Andy Thibault v. Regional School District 10 Superintendent, Paula Schwartz

CT-N, The Connecticut Network

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    The Famous Douche Bag Case

    The school system that banned Avery Doninger from running for office and suppressed the write-in vote electing her as 2008 Class Secretary of Lewis Mills High School in Burlington had some explaining to do on Jan. 4.

    Three complaints were consolidated for a state Freedom of Information Commission hearing held at 11:30 a.m., Friday, Jan. 4, at 18-20 Trinity St., Hartford. A decision could take weeks or months.

    The FOI complaints center on the suppression of the write-in vote, the failure to produce ballots promptly as required by the FOI law, and the failure to produce numerous other records including details of legal bills incurred by taxpayers.

    Following is a Readers Digest version of the case:

    Avery Doninger, a senior at Lewis S. Mills High School in Burlington, CT, has civil rights actions pending in the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City and U.S. District Court in New Haven. She and her mother, Lauren Doninger, sued Principal Karissa Niehoff and Superintendent Paula Schwartz after they removed Avery from the ballot for Class of 2008 secretary.

    Avery Doninger was among a group of four students who lobbied the community for support of an annual battle of the bands sponsored by the Student Council. The student council adviser suggested the students reach out to taxpayers and the students copied the adviser an on email to the community.

    Schwartz became very upset after taxpayers called her and she cancelled the event known as Jamfest. Doninger subsequently referred to administrators in a live journal blog as central office douche bags, and Schwartz's son found the posting while trolling the internet for his mother a couple weeks later. While Avery Doninger was banned from school office, another student who called Schwartz a dirty whore was given an award and lauded for citizenship.

    School officials suppressed the write-in vote in which Doninger was elected by a plurality. Schwartz refused to accept Doninger's apology for her choice of words. During an assembly, Niehoff banned free-speech and Team Avery t-shirts and seized at least one shirt.

    The Doningers are seeking -- among other remedies -- an apology for civil rights violations, recognition of the write-in victory and sharing of the secretary position with the administration-backed candidate.

    U.S. District Judge Mark Kravitz denied a motion for a preliminary injunction [immediate relief] and his ruling is being appealed to the Second Circuit. A hearing is expected to take place in January in New York City.

    The FOI hearing scheduled for Jan. 4 had been postponed twice: from Dec. 6, so Schwartz could vacation in Aruba during her last month on the job; and on Dec. 13 because of snow.

  • Nightline Show On Local Bloggers & Other Cool Blasts From The Past:**

  • ** Links include video commentary on the Doninger Civil Rights Lawsuit

  • More About The Jan. 4 Hearing


    -- Col. Klink & Paula Schwartz?

    -- Sgt. Schultz & Karissa Niehoff?

  • Quick Blast From Little Anthony & The Imperials

  • Ballad Of The Lying Lawyer

  • Lying Lawyer To Testify Voluntarily?

  • Douchebagville Outpost For Equal Rights & Education

    In Cooperation With
    The Military Government
    Of Pakistan's Gen. Musharraf

  • Douchebagville Establishes Diplomatic Ties With Pakistan

  • Hartford Advocate News Brief On Douche Bag Case

  • Douche Bag Administrators Ordered To Comply With FOI Law

  • Same Kind OF FOI Violation From August


  • JI Story On Write-In Win

  • Whippings & Beatings Part Of Curious Legal Strategy By Douche Bags

  • Doninger Final Reply Brief For Second Circuit
  • 1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    I still don't understand what the major civil rights issue is in this case. The Bill of Rights doesn't include the right to run for class secretary. Perhaps the school administration made a mistake in the way it handled this matter. It seems the student also made a mistake in resorting to name-calling.

    I guess I'd be more concerned if the student had actually had something smart or important to say. She was acting like a spoiled brat and got caught for it. Is your argument that high school students should be free to hurl boorish, profane insults at their teacher or school administrators without fear of punishment?