The Arkansas Supreme Court,
in summer recess, issued an order today again denying a Hughes School District's
request to expedite its appeal of a circuit court ruling denying its request to block consolidation of the district with West Memphis.
June 15, Judge Richard Proctor said he couldn't stay his ruling pending Hughes' appeal. The state Board of Education voted to consolidate Hughes because it was slightly below the 350-student minimum and also had fiscal problems. Hughes contends that a 2015 law allowed waivers from the enrollment rule for districts otherwise meeting standards. June 23, the Supreme Court said it wouldn't stay Proctor or expedite its consideration of the appeal.
The appeal can't be concluded before the school year begins and, in any case, the consolidation took effect yesterday.
Given the Supreme Court's record, an expedited schedule would not have been much help. The same-sex marriage case was expedited, but the Supreme Court still hadn't ruled eight months later. Instead, the U.S. Supreme Court settled the issue without a public decision from the Arkansas Supreme Court.