Friday, May 27, 2022


High gas prices are not slowing down Memorial Day travel, early voting starts tomorrow in Nevada, and Oregon activists seek accountability for dioxin contamination in low-income Eugene.


Education Secretary Cardona calls for action in after the Texas massacre, Republicans block a domestic terrorism vote, and Secretary of State Blinken calls China the greatest challenger to the U.S. and its allies.


High-speed internet is being used to entice remote workers to rural communities, Georgia is offering Black women participation in a guaranteed income initiative, and under-resourced students in Montana get a boost toward graduation.

Advocates Heading to Court Over School Funding


Tuesday, August 2, 2016   

PHILADELPHIA - A lawsuit claiming that state school funding levels violate the state constitution is set to go to court next month. Pennsylvania has the most inequitable school-funding system in the entire country. Although passage of the fair funding formula and a modest increase in state funding for this coming school year is a step in the right direction, advocates say it isn't enough.

According to attorney Michael Churchill, with the Public Interest Law Center, they looked at the standards set by the formula, and what poor districts need now to meet them.

"We just applied the median statewide average costs that are currently being spent and it comes out to $3.1 billion that is needed in additional state funding," he said.

The lawsuit was filed almost two years ago. Next month the state Supreme Court will hear oral arguments to determine whether the courts can intervene and hold the Legislature accountable.

Jamella Miller is a parent and a plaintiff in the suit. Her oldest daughter went to a school that had adequate funding, but her younger children now attend school in a poorer district. And she said the differences are glaring.

"One of the most striking examples was computer labs," she said. "We are currently in the age of computers where everything is computerized, everything is based off of advanced technology and our current school district does not have that."

After years of cuts to education, the system still relies on property taxes for much of school funding. And Churchill said poor districts simply can't make up the difference.

"Even though they have much higher tax rates than many of the wealthy districts, they can't afford to put in the basics that their children need to meet Pennsylvania standards," he said.

Churchill said even if they win in court, it still will be up to the Legislature to raise the funds and get them to the schools to achieve the state's educational goals.

get more stories like this via email

Early voting locations will be open across Nevada for several weeks, from May 28 through June 10. (Jlmcanally/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The Nevada primary election is June 14, and early voting starts tomorrow and runs through June 10. Mail balloting is now permanent, so every active …

Social Issues

Democrats in the Florida Legislature are reviving calls for stricter gun-control laws, following the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. Florida's …


This week, in honor of World Otter Day, conservation groups are looking to raise awareness about efforts to restore sea otters along more areas of …

There's been a roughly 38% drop in drowning deaths over the past two decades. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

With the unofficial start to summer, pools around Ohio are opening this Memorial Day weekend, and when it comes to swim time, experts encourage …


Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of water recreation season, and before putting on a swimsuit, Iowa environmental experts say being mindful …

A 2019 report from the Economic Policy Institute found teacher shortages were especially acute in higher-poverty schools. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

As the nation processes the horrific shooting in Uvalde, where 19 children and two teachers were killed, teachers' unions across Illinois and America …

Social Issues

The cost of heading out of town this Memorial Day weekend will be higher than past years, with higher gas prices and inflation hitting travelers…

Health and Wellness

One of Connecticut's largest health systems launched a new resource in Hartford this month, aimed at helping patients access healthy and nutritious …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021