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Pasco parents filing temporary injunction against school rezoning plan

Attorney says school district mishandled process
Posted: 6:08 PM, Feb 09, 2017
Updated: 2017-02-10 07:18:57Z

Doug Wood understands school overcrowding is a problem.

“Rezoning needs to be done, but it needs to be done fairly,” he said.

Wood has two daughters at Wiregrass Ranch High school in Wesley Chapel.

But if new boundaries are kept, the two teens will be separated. His son will also be shifted to a different middle school from many of the kids he’s grown up with.

“There’s a lot of stress. My son is taking it very hard. He actually doesn’t want to move. He wants to be homeschooled if need be," said Wood.

We’ve heard from countless families that are upset with the rezoning plan on both sides of Pasco County.

RELATED: Pasco County school board approves rezoning plans

Now those families are banding together to fight with the help of attorney Robert Stines of Phelps Dunbar LLP.

“Ideally I would like the school board to take a step back and say maybe there were some mistakes,” said Stines.

Stones said the Pasco school district violated rules in the process by not properly communicating. He said they also didn’t follow Sunshine Laws that all meetings have to be public.

“That makes the entire process unlawful. The rule is unlawful. Therefore it has to be invalidated and we start from scratch,” said Stines.

The new boundaries are set to take effect next school year. But Stines just filed an injunction to stop it.

The Pasco School District said Thursday they can’t comment on a lawsuit.

Meanwhile, parents in both east and west Pasco County are raising money for the legal fees.

Both areas have GoFundMe pages set up:

Combined they have raised more than $13,000.

“Its basically the homeowners are putting this up out their pockets to fund this. We are taxpayers and how is the school board using tax payer money to fight their own taxpayers. That’s one of the questions,” said Wood.

Only certain parents have stepped forward and are named in the lawsuit. But they hope to represent all the effected communities.