North Forest ISD at the End of the Line? Judge Rejects Ruling, HISD Moves Forward
HISD officials seem pretty darn confident about it, considering they've already got plans for summer school classes for North Forest students.
After years of low performance in the academic arena and troubled finances, North Forest was ordered to be annexed by HISD by the Texas Education Association by July 1, but the small school district has fought hard to avoid being gobbled up.
On Wednesday, North Forest lost a last-ditch court battles to keep the school district from being annexed by HISD. U.S. District Judge David Hittner rejected claims that allowing the school district to be annexed by HISD would violate the rights of minority voters under federal law, removing the stay he'd previously granted North Forest.
Hittner's decision came the day after the Supreme Court struck down a key part of the Voting Rights Act, and Hittner cited that ruling in his decision. Hittner wrote that the Supreme Court's ruling meant the TEA officials no longer needed approval from the U.S. Justice Department to make changes like dissolving North Forest and making the smaller school district a part of HISD. (They were required to have any changes that would shift voting power -- say, for example, the election of school board members -- in an area.)
"Because Texas is no longer a covered jurisdiction, it no longer must seek preclearance for any change affecting voting," Hittner wrote.