Brewer Storefront, the pro bono law firm led by Bill Brewer which recent settled a Voting Rights Act lawsuit against Richardson ISD, filed a similar suit today/Tuesday in federal court against Lewisville ISD. The complaint alleges that LISD’s at-large voting system for electing trustees keeps Hispanic, African American and Asian voters from electing the school board members of their choice.
LISD’s seven trustees, their eight-member leadership team and their superintendent are all white. In 2017-18, 41 percent of LISD students were white, 30 percent were Hispanic, 14 percent were Asian and 11 percent were African American. The lawsuit notes an achievement gap between LISD schools serving mostly white students versus schools with a majority of non-white kids.
The suit, filed on behalf of LISD parent Frank Vaughan, seeks to halt the May 4 school board elections and replace the at-large system with seven single-member districts.
“Our client believes the voting scheme utilized by Lewisville ISD unfairly denies people of color a fair opportunity to elect candidates of their choosing – trustees that represent their interests, schools and communities,” said Brewer in a news release. “We believe the school board should adopt a more representative electoral process to serve this multiracial and ethnically diverse school district.”
Brewer sued RISD in January of 2018 on behalf of former trustee David Tyson, and the settlement last month resulted in a plan to implement five single-member districts and elect two trustees at-large. The board approved five new districts and now awaits approval from the judge to delay the May 4 election until November. Although no financial judgment was awarded to the plaintiff, attorney’s fees of $385,000 were paid by RISD to Brewer Storefront to settle the suit.
In addition to RISD, Brewer has been successful with similar lawsuits in Carrollton-Farmers Branch, Irving and Grand Prairie.
At the time of this writing, there’s been no response yet from Lewisville ISD. And Brewer hasn’t released the name of any other school district it’s eyeing for future suits.