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Lawsuit Seeks To Overhaul School Finance System

Publication Date: 
May 20, 2010
Source: 
Southern California Public Radio - 89.3 KPCC
Author: 
Hettie Lynne Hurtes

The Youth and Education Law Project (YELP) of the Mills Legal Clinic at Stanford Law School is co-counsel with Bingham McCutchen in Robles-Wong v. California representing individual plaintiffs, including the named plaintiff Maya Robles-Wong. Under the direction of Professor Bill Koski, the Youth and Education Law Project provides Stanford Law students the opportunity to represent youth and families in special education and school discipline matters, community outreach and education, school reform litigation, policy research, and legal advocacy. This lawsuit asks the court to compel the State of California to align its school finance system—its funding policies and mechanisms—with the educational program that the State has put in place.

KPCC-FM ran this story:

A coalition of students, school districts and education groups have sued the state of California to force the governor and Legislature to come up wtih a new system to fund public schools. The suit asks the court to declare the current finance system unconstitutional because the state doesn't provide enough money to cover its mandates and programs.

The plaintiffs say the state has cut 17-billion dollars from schools over the last two years with the budget crisis leading to teacher layoffs, larger class sizes and cuts to electives, summer school and student services.

They claim California now ranks near the bottom nationally in per-pupil spending, teacher-student ratios and academic achievement.

More information on the lawsuit at California Schools.