Can a School Leadership Team member who claims that Title I funds were misused in his school challenge the OSI determination that nothing was done improperly?

No. Petitioner, the UFT representative on the school’s School Leadership Team complained to the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) that federal Title I funds were misallocated in his school. OSI, after a two-year delay, determined that nothing was done improperly and closed his complaint.

Petitioner brought an Article 78 proceeding to challenge OSI’s determination and the Appellate Division, First Department, held he had no standing to maintain the petition. The Appellate Division found “[p]etitioner’s status as a complainant who initiated an administrative investigation, does not provide him with standing for a private right of action to challenge the agency’s determination, absent a demonstration that he suffered actual injury.”

The concept of standing is an important aspect of litigation to help make sure that those who bring cases actually have a dispute that they need determined by the Court. Otherwise, without an actual stake in the proceeding, or lack of standing, they may not be fully committed as litigants.

MATTER OF THOMAS v. New York City Dept. of Educ., 2016 NY Slip Op 2154 – NY_ Appellate Div., 1st Dept (March 24, 2016)

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