Attorney General Jason Miyares’ grand jury investigation into the Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) can go forward after the Virginia Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision to dismiss a lawsuit from the school board seeking to block the investigation.
In a Friday opinion, the state supreme court said the only grounds for blocking the injunction would be under a violation of the Virginia Constitution, which grants authority to school boards to oversee schools.
“The fear of, and potential for, investigative overreach by the grand jury does not constitute irreparable harm to the School Board’s authority under Article VIII, Section seven. The special grand jury is not hiring and firing teachers, spending money allocated for the schools, deciding where schools should be built, and so on, i.e. nothing the grand jury is doing restricts the School Board’s core constitutional power of supervision over the schools in Loudoun County. At this point, there does not appear to be any actual harm, much less irreparable harm,” the court said.
“Loudoun County Public Schools appreciates the Supreme Court’s consideration of the unusual circumstances regarding this special grand jury. While LCPS is disappointed in the results, it will continue to comply with the Special Grand Jury’s requests and awaits the results of its investigation,” LCPS said in a statement.
In January, Governor Glenn Youngkin ordered the investigation after reports of mishandled sexual assaults in the district, fulfilling campaign promises he and Miyares made. After the ruling was published, Miyares and Youngkin celebrated.
“As Attorney General, I made a promise to Virginians to investigate what happened last year in Loudoun County. In July, I defeated the Loudoun County School Board’s attempt to block the investigation in the trial court. Today, the Supreme Court of Virginia affirmed that victory. We are pleased with the court’s ruling and ready to move forward. This is yet another win for both Loudoun families and the Commonwealth in our fight for justice and answers,” Miyares said in a press release.
Youngkin said in his release, “Today’s ruling by Virginia’s Supreme Court to uphold our investigation in Loudoun is a victory for parents, teachers, and students. After the Loudoun County School Board failed to address sexual assault incidents in their district, were not held accountable for their actions and continuously let down students and parents in Virginia, I signed an executive order on my first day in office authorizing an investigation by Attorney General Miyares into the Loudoun County Public Schools.”
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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and The Star News Network. This article originally appeared in The Virginia Star. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the positions of The Republican Standard. Republished with permission.