Judge Rules that State is NOT Meeting Basic Education Needs
In what is sure to be a huge story (and possible battle royale with the Governor and the state versus the school districts), the Times reports that King County judge John Erlick has ruled that the state is not "providing ample funding for public schools." The judge expressed that he had no doubt this was the case.
From the article:
"He ordered the state Legislature to establish the actual cost of funding an ample education, and then to fund it with stable and dependable sources.
One question mark is the timeline determining the cost and how to pay for it.
Attorneys for both sides said they would have to first read the full decision to see if the judge set a deadline. If the judge decided on 2018, the year that the Legislature has said it planned to increase education spending by an estimated $1 billion a year, the state would be fine with that, said Bill Clark, the assistant attorney general who argued the case.
But the plaintiffs said they think and hope the judge wants state lawmakers to act faster than that."
It is interesting that while Washington State has one of the most explicit directions in its state constitution on education of almost any state in the union, we also are at about 42nd in funding. I have always believed this but I did see this chart from 2004-3005 and it makes me wonder.
From the article:
The state's attorneys argued that the state is living up to its constitutional duty and that it's up to the Legislature, not the courts, to determine what's ample when it comes to education.
They also have said the suit is moot because state lawmakers agreed last year to expand state support for public schools, and made that pledge to add more than $1 billion to the state education budget by 2018."
What is certainly a good question is what happened to the money the schools was supposed to get from the lottery? And we now have a PowerBall lottery? What about that money?