In a potentially important ruling for schools, the state's highest court ruled 6-1 that a lawsuit claiming the state has failed to provide a sound, basic education to small city school districts can move forward.
NYSUT filed an amicus brief in the case, which seeks to require the state to honor the 2006 Campaign for Fiscal Equity court directive, which has been delayed due to the state's financial problems. The state halted the phase-in of the CFE remedies during the 2010 and 2011 legislative sessions.
The state argued the case was moot, noting that school funding had improved and is high compared to other states. "A moot case is one in which nothing turns on the result — but if plaintfifs prevail here, large sums of taxpayer money would be directed to the public schools," Judge Smith wrote.
The Hussein case, which claims that small urban districts are underfunded by the state and need to receive more aid, now returns to the lower courts.