Local Reactions to Court Ruling in School Finance Case

Date 2013/2/6 4:00:00 | Topic: Lewisville ISD Notes

As reported yesterday, a state judge ruled in favor of school districts including Lewisville ISD who sued the State of Texas over inadequate and unfair school funding.

Here are some reactions from local officials:

Kathy Duke, LISD Trustee:
"This is just a first step. The system needs to be fixed. I believe we all know that. Now, Let's see what our Legislature says about this. This is about the kids, their education. They are the future leaders of Texas.

The judge was clear: Unconstitutional on all points. We are 49th in 50 states on funding. That is nothing to be proud of. If we want higher standards and Austin is going to ask for higher standards than they need to fund them."

Dr. Steve Waddell, LISD Superintendent:
"We are grateful and pleased at Judge Dietz' ruling. We won on all counts. It is important that the judge found a de facto state property tax and that the system is inequitable. Most important, he found that the funding was not adequate. Simply restoring the $5.4-billion is not sufficient. That would only replace the money that district's already had two years ago. The judge observed that if the state wants higher standard, they should pay for them. He was right in declining to rule on the interventions by TREE and charter schools. Those are matters for the legislature. It will, of course, go to the Supreme Court, but this is, nonetheless, an important victory."

Julie Foughty, LISD Trustee:
"I'm pleased with the ruling but caution parents to not let their guard down. This will be appealed and our state will spend a great deal of money going into a special session to address a new funding system. Parents who want strong public schools need to be watchful and alert on this issue and let those who represent them in Austin know that they want this problem fixed and our children's future in public schools secure and supported with their vote. "

Carol Kyer, LISD Board President:
"We are pleased with Judge Dietz's ruling. He states that Texas does have a de facto state tax with how schools are currently funded. Most importantly, we applaud the ruling highlighting that the current finance system is inequitable and inadequate. We also agree with his comments regarding the state implementing higher standards, such as STAAR and EOC testing, in that the state should provide funds to school districts to support this new system.

While we recognize this ruling will be appealed, this ruling is truly a victory for LISD and all school districts across Texas."

This article comes from The Lewisville Texan Journal

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