ERIC Number: ED416581
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
Recent Education Finance Litigation. State Education Funding Systems Ruled Constitutionally Deficient in Tennessee, Alabama, Massachusetts, North Dakota, and Arizona. State Systems Upheld in Nebraska, Minnesota, Florida, Oregon, and New York.
Constitutional challenges to state statutory schema for distributing education dollars to local school districts has provided a study course of litigation in state court systems since the early 1970s. This paper is an analysis of 10 of these cases, which were ruled upon in the first half of the 1990s. The focus is on constitutional deficiency and how each state's educational plan was seen as containing inequities. Cases from Tennessee, Alabama, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Arizona, Nebraska, Minnesota, Florida, Oregon, and New York are briefly described and the court ruling outlined. Some of the reasoning behind decisions of constitutionally deficient systems include cases where poorer districts were in an unfavorable position in the generation of per-pupil revenue, where the state funding structure produced inequitable educational opportunities for students, where the state legislature had failed its constitutional obligation to provide all children the equal opportunity for adequate education, and where the court declared that the state's educational system violated the education provision and the equal protection clause of the state's constitution. In each case, the court rendering the final decision was convinced by evidence that inequities in funding translated into unconstitutionally disparate educational programs and services offered to students. (Contains 100 endnotes referencing the cases.) (RJM)
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A