Recently our state's Supreme Court has once again weighed in on the current and ongoing McCleary case. In review of what the issue is, the state lost a lawsuit when they failed to prove that they are providing funding for basic education of students in the state of Washington. The state didn't fail to meet the courts definition of what is and what isn't basic education, they failed to meet their own definition.
In a nutshell this case is based on the fact that our state has a constitutional requirement to make public education the paramount duty, and paramount simply means that it is more important than anything else.
When the state lost the lawsuit the court gave them a deadline and demanded that they make progress. The state responded by developing a plan. This plan has never been met and each year we fall further behind in funding for our kids. Just over a year ago the state put in place a fine of $100,000 a day on the state, a fine that continues to be in place and still nothing is done.
The ruling from our state's highest court is more than just disappointing, it is frustrating. They have failed to uphold our constitution, their own demands on our state, which in turn is failing to support our kids. They have pushed the case further out and are now waiting to see if the legislature will do something in the next session, even though they haven't done anything in the past several sessions.
Two things should be remembered at the heart of this case. First, all students in our state are the issue. They receive less funding for their education than almost every other state in country. We are asking our kids to learn as much as they can and be ready for the real-world without support from their own state or the legislators who are supposed to represent them. Second, this case began as case about one student who wasn't having his education paid for as our state constitution demands. This student is now out of school and never did receive the funding for their education as they should have.
If you would like read State Superintendent Randy Dorn's reaction you can find it here.