My last posts have been about the McCleary supreme court ruling and how it is a victory for public education in the state. Even with some legislators suggesting that there may still be cuts our spirits were lifted by the ruling. Well, in this Educationnext post by Joshua Dunn he provides us with a different perspective.
The title describes his thoughts, "School Finance Litigation: With defeats like these, who needs victories?"
The response from the state legislature only confirmed that the Court’s decision is going to be largely irrelevant. The Seattle Times reported that, after the Court’s decision, “lawmakers on both sides of the aisle made clear that when the Legislature convenes Monday to address a $1.5 billion budget shortfall, education cuts will still be on the table,” despite the Court’s decision. Washington, like most states, has faced declining revenues, and funding education at the level desired by the plaintiffs would require drastic cuts to other essential government services.
If McCleary counts as a victory for school finance advocates, then states facing these lawsuits should hope for similar defeats in the future.
Just when I was thinking that we might make it through the session without additional loss of revenue, I come across this post and it makes me wonder what impact the ruling will have in the short term. I'll find out more next Monday when we visit our legislators and share what we learn with you.