“That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.”
I have seen claims about the H035195 court ruling that to me do not appear to be supported by the language in the ruling, or as Christopher Hitchens might call it: evidence. In this post, I will interpret the ruling based on my reading of the ruling, backed up by quotes from within the ruling. If anyone feels my logic is in error, I encourage you to correct me. Or better yet, write your own interpretation of this ruling also backed up by quotes from within the ruling.
If you have not already done so, please download and read the entire ruling yourself. It is imperative to understand the source material directly rather than someone else's interpretation. The first 2.5 pages are what I believe are the most relevant.
For brevity, I will summarize some language here. The court found that LASD was failed to take several factors into consideration when doing the "reasonably equivalent" analysis of both teaching and non-teaching space. The court goes on to conclude:
Based upon these deficiencies in the aggregate, we hold that the facilities offer was inconsistent with the mandate of Proposition 39 that a school district conduct a fair assessment of the facilities needed by the in-district charter school students so that those facilities offered meet the reasonable equivalence standard.
the District acted arbitrarily by failing to apply the proper legal standards in its facilities offer to Bullis, in violation of Proposition 39.
In my reading of this, the court is saying that Prop 39 requires that school districts conduct a fair assessment of the facilities using proper legal standards. LASD failed to do this. The court is saying that LASD must be more dilligent, accurate, and complete with their assessment of what is considered reasonably equivalent facilities. That is all.
There are a lot of things the ruling does not say. It does not say specifically what reasonably equivalent must mean. It does not say that Bullis must receive a 10 acre site. It does not say that Bullis must recieve a single site. All it says is that LASD must dilligent, accurate, and complete with their facilities assessment.
Reading over the preliminary offer that LASD submitted to BCS for 2012-13, it appears to me that LASD has used more dilligent, accurate, and complete assessments, thus complying with the ruling. Here is a portion of the text from that document in support of this assertion:
"The District understands the court of appeals decision to mean that a facilities offer can satisfy Proposition 39’s requirements despite an alleged 'site size' discrepancy. Indeed, the court of appeal acknowledged that the District could neutralize an alleged size discrepancy by offering 'facilities qualitatively superior to those of the comparison group schools' by other measures under Proposition 39.
As set forth herein, the District’s facilities offer generally allocates teaching, non-teaching and specialized teaching space to BCS in excess of the amounts provided to students at the District’s comparison group schools. These classroom, administrative and specialized teaching spaces, rather than the marginal spaces included in the 'total site size' calculation, are the spaces most relevant to providing a quality education to students. As such, the amounts of space allocated to BCS for teaching, non-teaching and specialized teaching space provided to BCS in these spaces in excess of its allocation were considered in weighing the total site size factor."
One more thing: the CA supreme court did not—in fact—rule on this case. They simply declined to hear it. It is not the same thing.