No quick ruling on takeover

Times Staff Writer

The California Supreme Court refused Wednesday to immediately review a ruling that has prevented Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa from taking partial control of the Los Angeles school district.

The state high court's decision means the school district's challenge of mayoral control will remain before the 2nd District Court of Appeal in Los Angeles. That court will hear arguments in early April and probably decide the case 30 to 60 days later.

Villaraigosa had sought to bypass the appeals court in hopes of expediting the case and winning a ruling that would uphold a state law giving him significant authority over schools. Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Dzintra Janavs struck down the law in December.

The state high court rarely takes cases until they have been argued before an intermediate appeals court.

Fred Woocher, a lawyer for the Los Angeles Unified School District, said the district did not oppose state high court review but was "definitely not upset" about the delay. The eventual ruling by the appeals court is expected to be challenged, and the Supreme Court will have to decide once again whether to review the case.

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