Connecticut Educational Funding System Declared Unconstitutional

A Judge in Connecticut has declared the way that the State of Connecticut funds it it schools is irrational and unconstitutional. The mayor of Hartford is calling it one of the most significant Connecticut court decisions in decades.

Superior Court Judge Thomas Moukawsher ruled Wednesday in an 11-year-old lawsuit that the state must overhaul its education system and come up with a new funding formula within 180 days to ensure the state’s poorest school districts have resources to provide an adequate education.

“The only reason for any of the court’s legal ruling is the fundamental right to an adequate educational opportunity,” the judge said. “Changes must come.”

The Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding filed its lawsuit in 2005, arguing that Connecticut’s current system results in more money for wealthy school districts, at the expense of poorer districts. The Supreme Court then sent the case to the Superior Court in 2010 for trial.

The state has said all public schools are adequately funded and there has been no evidence to show that spending more would lead to better test scores.

“We welcome the conversation this decision brings. We know that to improve outcomes for all Connecticut students and to close persistent achievement gaps, we need to challenge the status quo and take bold action,” Gov. Dannel Malloy said.

I am indebted to my friend, Marie Sobers for alerting me to this.