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Friday, July 15, 2011

Circuit Court Dismisses Complaint Against Fairfax County School Board

On July 13, the Fairfax County Circuit Court dismissed the lawsuit filed by Jill DeMello Hill against the Fairfax County School Board under the Open Meetings provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).


In an eight-page opinion, Judge Leslie Alden determined that members of the School Board did not engage in any secret meetings by e-mail in the days leading to the vote to close Clifton Elementary School.  She found no basis to disturb the Court’s previous decision upholding the School Board’s July 2010 decision to close the school.  The judge also denied Hill’s request for payment of her attorneys’ fees.  


Although Judge Alden found several minor violations of the FOIA by the School Board, she concluded that those defects were insubstantial, given the absence of impact on the public meeting and the large volume of documents initially released to Hill.



Note:  For more information, contact the Fairfax County Public Schools Department of Communications and Community Outreach at 571-423-1200.