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City School Committee Overrules Shaplin's Bid for Petition Action

By Richard N. Levy

The Cambridge School Committee last night overrode the protestations of Judson T. Shaplin '42 associate dean of the School of Education, and postponed a consideration of the petition to annul the 17 "political" appointments made by the committee in a closed session last month.

The petition called for a referendum on the appointments and was found last week to contain 11,023 valid signatures. It was given to the committee by the city clerk last week to be voted upon "immediately."

Shaplin cited the city regulation stating that the committee had to "reconsider the appointments immediately" upon presentation. Edward Fitzgerald, Shaplin's most voluble opponent, revealed that "authorities" had told him that "immediately" could be construed as "within 30 days." His motion was passed, empowering Mayor Edward Sullivan, the chairman, to call a special meeting to consider the petition.

The majority of the committee later passed Sullivan's motion to photostat copies of the petition to be distributed to all school committee members. Shaplin requested that the group ask legal counsel to determine whether the move was within the law, but, agreeing with Fitzgerald that the committee could do what it wished with the petition, the majority defeated his proposal.

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