The Public School Code of 1949 in Pennsylvania law allows a majority of taxpayers in a municipality to petition the court of common pleas to establish their municipality as an independent school district in order to transfer it from its current school district to an adjacent school district. This was seen in the case of Washington Township Independent School District (WTISD) petitioning to transfer from Dover Areas School District (Dover SD) to Northern York County School District (Northern York SD).
In order to receive approval for this transfer, there is a three-step process that involves the court of common pleas, the Secretary of Education, and the Board. Anderson, Converse & Fennick Attorneys at Law filed a petition on behalf of the Washington Township Education Coalition in 2012 to request the transfer. While the petition got through the Common Pleas Court and the Secretary of Education in 2014, the Board disapproved of WTISD’s petition following an affirmative vote of the majority of its members.
The fight for the petition with the Pennsylvania State Board of Education continued since then with three Commonwealth Court appeals. On June 4, 2020, the order of the Pennsylvania State Board of Education was reversed with no additional hearings. The Washington Township Independent School District’s petition has been granted.
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