Watch Oral Arguments of the NY School Finance Case, Live Webcast in 138 Horace Mann
By Laurie Beck
The New York State Court of Appeals' web site (http://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/) will broadcast oral argument of the school funding litigation in Campaign for Fiscal Equity v State of New York live on Tuesday, October 10, 2006, beginning at 2 p.m. TC's Michael Rebell will argue for the plaintiffs, the Campaign for Fiscal Equity, in this 13-year-old lawsuit. The webcast will be enhanced to allow a larger viewership. An archived webcast of the entire proceeding will remain available on this web site for several months. TC will be showing the webcast live on Tuesday at 2PM in 138 Horace Mann.
While the case has been repeatedly heard over the years, and the plaintiffs have received several favorable judgments, many observers feel that this appeal could be decisive and in support of the plaintiffs.
In this appeal, the Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE) is asking the Court of Appeals to evaluate the State's noncompliance. CFE is urging the court to affirm an order from an appellate court that requires the Governor and the Legislature to add between $4.7 billion and $5.63 billion in operating aid, phased in over four years, to New York City's schools. The plaintiffs are also asking the highest court to order strong accountability measures to ensure that when additional dollars begin to flow they are spent in ways that make a difference in the lives of the children who need them most.
In its 2003 order, the Court of Appeals mandated extensive reforms to the school finance system to ensure every New York child a meaningful high school education. The Court of Appeals directed the Governor and Legislature to ensure that every school in New York City have the resources necessary to provide the opportunity for a sound basic education. To comply with this directive, the Governor and the Legislature were directed to determine the cost of providing a sound basic education in New York City, and then they were required to enact appropriate funding and accountability reforms by July 30, 2004. Because the Governor and the Legislature failed to comply with the 2003 order of the Court of Appeals, the plaintiffs are back before the court on another, and hopefully their last, appeal. CFE is anticipating a final and enforceable order from the highest court that will finally bring a resolution to this case.
All eyes, once again, are on the court.
To read documents filed in the CFE lawsuit see the CFE website at: http://www.cfequity.org/. In addition, the Teachers College library contains an extensive collection of documents filed in the CFE lawsuit.previous page