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Decision No. 14,811

Appeal of B.L. and L.L., on behalf of their son, from action of the Board of Education of the City School District of the City of Gloversville regarding student discipline.

Decision No. 14,811

(October 10, 2002)

Murphy, Niles & Greco, attorneys for petitioners, Carmel J. Greco, Esq., of counsel

Wood & Seward, attorneys for respondent, David R. Seward, Esq., of counsel

MILLS, Commissioner.--Petitioners challenge a determination of the Board of Education of the City School District of the City of Gloversville ("respondent") affirming their son"s suspension. The appeal must be dismissed.

During the 2001-2002 school year, petitioners" son was enrolled in the ninth grade in respondent"s district. On November 9, 2001, petitioners" son was involved in a fight with another student during art class. Petitioners" son was suspended by respondent"s high school principal for three days as a result of the altercation. On February 25, 2002, respondent upheld the suspension. This appeal ensued. Petitioners" request for interim relief was denied on April 4, 2002.

Petitioners do not dispute that their son was involved in the fight, but submit that he acted in self-defense and that the penalty imposed was both harsh and unjust. Petitioners ask that I impose an alternate form of discipline, such as in-school community service.

The appeal must be dismissed as moot. The relief sought by the petition deals only with the severity of the penalty imposed. Because the suspension has already been served, there is no meaningful relief that can be granted at this time. It is well settled that the Commissioner of Education will not render a decision on a state of facts that no longer exists or which subsequent events have laid to rest (Appeal of Denis, 40 Ed Dept Rep 306, Decision No. 14,487; Appeal of a Student with a Disability, 40 id. 42, Decision No. 14,416; Appeal of Debbie L., 39 id. 505, Decision No. 14,294).