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PPS challenges parents' complaint

Two complaints filed against Portland Public Schools by parent groups last month are still working their way through the system. Here’s where they stand:

• The Portland Parents Coalition filed a complaint with the Oregon Department of Education on Oct. 30 alleging that the district’s failure to provide the state mandated number of annual instructional hours and class hours per credit to high school students.

PPS issued a press release on Nov. 5 challenging several parts of the complaint, but the coalition members charge the district of making factual errors in some of their statements.

PPS has 30 days to respond to ODE. ODE will then review its response, may investigate further, and issue an order on whether PPS is in violation of any rule. If so, the district will be required to submit a plan to address the noncompliance.

For PPS’ original response to the complaint can be found at www.pps.k12.or.us/news/9223.htm.

Click here to read the coalition's rebuttal.

• PPS is working with Parents for Excellent Principals after the group's Oct. 21 complaint about the two head administrators at the Metropolitan Learning Center.

The Level 3 (superintendent-level) complaint asked that an external investigator with no conflicts be assigned to look into the case. The district has agreed, and a regular dialogue between MLC parents, three school board members and an advisor to the superintendent has begun, according to Bruce Scherer, the MLC parent who filed the complaint.

The coalition also asked for measures to ensure accountability, training and placement of principals at schools. Two other MLC parents filed similar complaints against their principal in the past week.