School-finance ruling could have national impact

schoolmoneyThe Kansas Supreme Court’s upcoming decision on a school-funding lawsuit, and the Legislature’s response to that ruling, could have a far-reaching effect, according to David Sciarra, executive director of the Education Law Center, and Wade Henderson, president of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “A court-stripping constitutional amendment, and defiance of a state Supreme Court order, would shred the very fabric of Kansas’ government and send shock waves through state capitals across the nation,” they wrote in a New York Times commentary headlined “What’s the Matter With Kansas’ Schools?” They also said: “It would allow elected branches to avoid any responsibility to adhere to the language and interpretation of their state constitutions by the courts. It would gravely undermine judicial independence and shut the courthouse door to vulnerable children who, as a last resort, seek legal redress to vindicate their fundamental right to an education.”