LRSD & Joshua Intervenors on board with proposed deseg settlement

PULASKI COUNTY (KATV)--The LittleRock School District and the Joshua Intervenors are now on board with aproposed agreement to end payments the state makes to boost desegregationefforts.

Theboard voted unanimously to go forward with or without the Joshua Intervenors.

However,it took a resolution to be passed, before Joshua agreed to this settlement.

Tonight's board meeting did get heated beforea decision was made.

TheAttorney for the Intervenors, State Rep. John Walker, asked to speak before theboard voted, but since this was a special meeting a unanimous vote was neededto allow him to speak; thatmotion failed because one board member denied it.

Theboard then had to continue and vote on the matter at hand, which was if theboard should move forward with the proposed settlement with or without the JoshuaIntervenors.

"We can complete this settlement, and we willbe able to be free for a new day in the district and not be tangled up in thecourts like we have for so many years," said LRSD Board President Greg Adams.

Partof the settlement includes continued payments from the state through the schoolyear 2017-2018.

$37.3Million must be allocated toward facilities funding.

Priorto the board approving the settlement, they passed a resolution to commit to a facilitiesstudy, find out which schools are top priority and also focus on helpingschools in southwest Little Rock.

Itwas this resolution that made the Joshua Intervenors jump on board.

"It would have been unnecessary for them toeven gone into the vote, to have a discussion for me, all I was going to do wassay; hey we reached agreement since you all have agreed to do these things andthat's it," said Attorney for the Joshua Intervenors, State Rep. John Walker.

Now,Attorney General Dustin McDaniel can proceed with this deal.

As allthree school districts are in: Little Rock, North Little Rock and the PulaskiCounty Special School District to approve the proposed settlement and avoidheading to court.

McDanielreleased a statement after tonight's agreement saying:

"Thisis a historic milestone decades in the making. With this agreement, the stateand the three Pulaski County school districts can move forward to focus on thebest interests of the students, rather than on costly, burdensome litigation."

He went on to say, helooks forward to presenting the agreement to the court very soon.