Lawsuit over education funding in Pennsylvania heads to trial in Harrisburg

Pennsylvania Politics

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A lawsuit filed in 2014 over education funding in Pennsylvania is heading to trial Thursday. The lawsuit claims the state is violating its constitution by not properly funding public schools.

It names the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Gov. Tom Wolf and government officials, including Pa. Sen. Pro Tempore Jake Corman and Speaker of the House Bryan Culter, as defendants.

School districts will make their case, arguing that the state’s funding formula is skewed and harmed Pennsylvania students in low-income families. Petitioners say the funding gap disproportionately impacts students of color, with 50% of black students and 40% of Latino students attending school in the lowest 20% of local districts.

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The complaint was dismissed in 2015 but was resurrected by the Supreme Court a short time later. Attorneys for the governor, education officials, and top lawmakers have argued that the state was fulfilling its duties.

The trial will take place at the Pennsylvania Judicial Center in Harrisburg and could last for several weeks.

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