Updated: Monday, 22 Mar 2010, 5:59 PM EDT
Published : Monday, 22 Mar 2010, 5:44 PM EDT
Hartford, Conn. (WTNH) - For decades city and town leaders have been complaining that state government does not fairly and honestly send enough of your hard earned tax dollars back to them to help pay for the public schools your kids attend.
Back in November of 2005, lawyers for fifteen students from across the state brought an action in Hartford Superior Court challenging the constitutionality of what they described as a broken education system. They lost but appealed to the state's highest court.
"This is a very good decision for those of us who have long claimed that Connecticut's school funding laws have deprived Connecticut students of an equal educational opportunity," said John Yrchik, executive director of the Connecticut Education Association.
In a sharply divided opinion, the State Supreme Court has reversed a lower court judge who said that Connecticut school children have no right to a suitable education under the state constitution and that even a poor quality education meets constitutional standards and that the matter is an inappropriate concern for the courts.
After two long years of deliberations the high court has decided the lower court judge was wrong saying, "Judgment is reversed. We conclude further proceedings are required to determine as a question of fact whether the state's educational resources and standards have in fact provided the public school students in this case with constitutionally suitable education opportunities."
The kids in this case come from Bridgeport, Danbury, Windham, Hartford, New Haven, East Hartford, New London, Plainfield and New Britain.
The Yale based "Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding" first filed the case nearly five years ago.
"This decision puts Connecticut in the center of a national effort to use state constitutions to close the 'Achievement Gap,'" said Lindsey Luebchow of Yale Law School.