In upholding the constitutionality of the state’s school funding system, a unanimous South Dakota Supreme Court said Thursday it isn’t convinced that the money appropriated for schools is inadequate or that more money would produce higher test scores and graduation rates.
Of course, this ruling has to do with timing, they were ruling on the funding setup before the state cut education by 6.6%. Of course our governor is in a state of denial when it comes to funding education;
“I am pleased with this opinion because the appropriate place to determine school funding is the Legislature, not the courts,” Gov. Dennis Daugaard said in a written statement. “I believe we should focus on student achievement, not spending, as the best measure of educational success. That approach is very consistent with the Supreme Court’s decision.”
Yeah, let’s keep cutting education and watch those test scores soar . . . .
Abdallah thinks he’d succeed with that argument today. The Legislature balanced its budgets by freezing per-student funding last year and cutting it by 6.6 percent this year.Â “Although the court didn’t find that the system was unconstitutional at the time of the trial … I seriously doubt that our current system would survive this type of analysis,” Abdallah said.
But it doesn’t stop one Republican lawmaker from crying about how we need to just let him do his job;
The five-year legal battle has frustrated some observers, including Sen. Mark Johnston, R-Sioux Falls, who said he’s “very upset” that a majority of the state’s school districts would pay for a lawsuit against the state.Â “The Supreme Court has spoken that it’s our job as legislators to fund schools,” he said.
So Mark, when you going to start doing your job? I hardly think cutting education by 6.6% when there is $800 million sitting in an investment fund to pick up the slack is DOING YOUR JOB, in fact, you and your party should be charged with child neglect, that would be a more appropriate lawsuit.
But there was one small victory from this lawsuit;
While the lawsuit was pending, the state threatened to audit the coalition of school districts, taking the position that it’s illegal for them to finance a lawsuit against the state. When school officials asked for a judge’s declaration that they can sue, Wilbur agreed with the state; but in that case, a unanimous Supreme Court overturned Wilbur’s decision.
Of course, Repugs bring back the tired old argument;
House Republican leader David Lust of Rapid City said Thursday that most people think school funding should be up to the governor and the Legislature. If the public disapproves of the way the Legislature pays school districts, he said, voters can make a change by electing new legislators.
Good luck with that, your party has a stranglehold on the public because of your bullshit ‘lower taxes’ campaign slogans, and the fact that most (but not all) Democrats in the legislature are a bit timid, except one;
House Democratic leader Bernie Hunhoff of Yankton, a supporter of increased state aid to schools, said he agrees that funding decisions must be made in the Legislature. The lawsuit was filed only because parents and school district officials are frustrated with lawmakers, he said.
Exactly. They sit around and talk about guns and vaginas. Instead of legislating how life may begin or end, why not legislate what happens in between, part of that is providing a good education and investing in our youth. But hey, that reality makes sense, and reality is something Repugs in this state can’t grasp.