Federal fight for education funding focuses on preserving democracy

December 14, 2018

In 1973, the Supreme Court rejected education as a Constitutional right. For more than four decades, no one dared to directly challenge that ruling but, in just two years, four different legal teams and plaintiff groups have done just that—shifting their arguments toward educational quality, literacy and learning outcomes.

In 1973, plaintiffs in San Antonio Independent School District v. Rodriguez argued that school funding inequities violated the right to education. The Supreme Court rejected education as a fundamental right under the federal Constitution, leaving funding inequalities in Texas and elsewhere completely untouched.

For more than 40 years, no one even dared to directly challenge Rodriguez’s conclusion in court.

Now, in just two years, four different legal teams and plaintiff groups have done just that. But this time, they are shifting their arguments away from just claims about money. They are focusing on educational quality, literacy and learning outcomes.