DETROIT (WJBK) - The state of Michigan and Detroit Public Schools have been slapped with a big lawsuit that claims students and families have suffered because of mismanagement and crumbling classrooms.
The class action lawsuit filed by pro bono attorney Thomas Bleakey. He's going after state government and former DPS leaders including some who have been accused of corruption.
"One is to make it clear at the local elected public officials are not responsible for the disaster that the public schools have become," Bleakey said.
One frustrated parent has a a child who is autistic and says her son hasn't gotten the attention he needs.
"He supposed to have speech and a therapist, One on one," the parent, who did not want to be identified, said.
The lawsuit has been filed against 33 defendants including a dozen or so DPS principals who are accused of bribery and taking part in a kick back scheme stealing millions, now being arraigned in federal court on charges. Bleakey said the man allegedly behind all of that is included in his lawsuit.
"Norman Shy the vendor who is making millions off false invoices. I have the three emergency managers, representative Al Shoca, I have a state senator Phil Palva, and I have the Governor," Bleakey said.
Bleakey says the lawsuit is to make it clear who is responsible for the downfall of DPS, and he says he will seek money for damages at some point, but can't give a dollar amount.
"Don't talk about money until I put my money where my mouth this until I can prove there harm done and that somebody should pay."
Allan Tellis is a retired after teaching at Pershing High School. He said what needs to be dont to fix DPS is simple: checks and balances.
"What was mentioned today, you need checks and balances," Tellis said.
The mom we talked with doesn't want money. She wants one thing: her son and other students to be taken care of.
"All I want is my son to have justice. They don't have to give me a dollar. But you're not going to keep neglecting him and violating his rights. He's disabled and you're getting all of this money from the schools and you're not using it on the kids. These kids don't even have books. They have nothing."