Charter Day School lawyer violated court order, law firm to pay 64K in legal fees

Charter Day School in Leland (Photo: StarNews)

LELAND, NC (StarNews) — A law firm representing Charter Day School was ordered to pay legal fees after violating a court order by allowing psychologists to use webcams to observe children whose parents sued the school.

StarNews reports that U.S. District Court Judge Kimberly A. Swank wrote in a September order that Aaron Lindquist, an attorney representing Charter Day School, violated a court order barring psychologists from examining children whose parents, along with the American Civil Liberties Union, sued the school, claiming that its dress code policy requiring skirts or “skorts” for girls is discriminatory.

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“Plaintiffs have pled no cause of action placing their mental state at issue, and good cause has not been shown for any mental examinations of the minor children,” the court ruled in January.

Swank concluded that Lindquist and Baker Mitchell, owner of Charter Day School’s private operator, Roger Bacon Academy, attempted to circumvent that order by allowing psychologists to use the schools’ webcams to observe the children.

“Mitchell directed that a laptop computer be sent via overnight delivery to Defendants’ expert psychologists so they could conduct the classroom observations previously discussed,” according to the court order. “However, neither Plaintiffs’ counsel nor the guardians of the minor children were informed of the (teacher) interviews or classroom observations prior to receiving Defendants’ expert report on January 13, 2017.”

The order said Lindquist had also agreed in a stipulation with the ACLU and plaintiffs’ attorneys that teachers would not be interviewed by psychological experts. The interviews were conducted anyway, with Lindquist later claiming he never agreed that teachers would not be interviewed.

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