The court's argument is that the feds did not provide clear notice to the states of the cost implications if the states accepted the money. There will be plenty of spin to follow, but in short, the Feds lost.
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT
SCHOOL DISTRICT OF THE CITY OF PONTIAC, et Plaintiffs-Appellants,
SECRETARY OF THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT
Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Eastern District of Michigan at Detroit.
No. 05-71535--Bernard A. Friedman, Chief District Judge.
Argued: November 28, 2006
Decided and Filed: January 7, 2008
The No Child Left Behind Act rests on the most laudable of goals: to Ă˘€śensure that all children
have a fair, equal, and significant opportunity to obtain a high-quality education.Ă˘€ť 20 U.S.C. Ă‚Â§ 6301. Nobody challenges that aim. But a state official deciding to participate in NCLB could reasonably read Ă‚Â§ 7907(a) to mean that her State need not comply with requirements that are Ă˘€śnot paid for under the ActĂ˘€ť through federal funds. Thus, Congress has not Ă˘€śspoke[n] so clearly that we can fairly say that the State[s] could make an informed choiceĂ˘€ť to participate in the Act with the knowledge that they would have to comply with the ActĂ˘€™s requirements regardless of federal funding. See Pennhurst, 451 U.S. at 25. Of course, if that ultimately is what Congress intended, the ball is properly left in its court to make that clear. See Arlington, 126 S. Ct. at 2465 (Ginsburg, J., concurring) (Ă˘€śThe ball, I conclude, is properly left in CongressĂ˘€™ court to provide, if it so elects, for consultant fees and testing expenses beyond those IDEA and its implementing regulations already authorize, along with any specifications, conditions, or limitations geared to those fees and expenses Congress may deem appropriate.Ă˘€ť)(footnote omitted). Accordingly, we REVERSE the district courtĂ˘€™s judgment dismissing PlaintiffsĂ˘€™ complaint and REMAND for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
United States District Court
INDEX OF NCLB OUTRAGES