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Sailors v. Board of Educ. of Kent County, 387 U.S. 105 (1967)

Sailors v. Board of Education of the County of Kent

No. 430

Argued April 17-18, 1967

Decided May 22, 1967

387 U.S. 105


Appellants brought this suit seeking, inter alia, to enjoin as violative of the Fourteenth Amendment enforcement of a Michigan statute under which appellee school board and other county school boards are chosen not by the electors of the county, but by delegates from the local boards from candidates nominated by school electors. A three-judge district court, rejecting appellants' contention that the system paralleled the county-unit system invalidated in Gray v. Sanders, 372 U. S. 368, dismissed the complaint.


1. A three-judge court was properly convened, since the challenged statute has general and statewide application. Moody v. Flowers, ante, p. 387 U. S. 97, distinguished. P. 387 U. S. 107.

2. There is no constitutional reason why nonlegislative state or local officials may not be chosen otherwise than by elections. The functions of appellee school board are essentially administrative, and the elective-appointive system used to select its members is well within the State's latitude in the selection of such officials. Pp. 387 U. S. 107-111.

254 F.Supp. 17, affirmed.

Page 387 U. S. 106

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