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Courting Failure: How School Finance Lawsuits Exploit Judges’ Good Intentions and Harm Our Children


reviewed by Preston Green — February 15, 2007

coverTitle: Courting Failure: How School Finance Lawsuits Exploit Judges’ Good Intentions and Harm Our Children
Author(s): Eric A. Hanushek (Ed.)
Publisher: Hoover Institution Press, Stanford
ISBN: 0817947817 , Pages: 366, Year: 2006
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Since the late 1960s, plaintiffs in 45 states have challenged the constitutionality of school finance formulas. Recently, plaintiffs in several states have prevailed on an adequacy theory, in which they argue that state legislatures have failed to provide poor school districts with a minimal level of funding in violation of state education clauses. Courting Failure: How School Finance Lawsuits Exploit Judges’ Good Intentions and Harms Our Children, which is edited by noted educational economist Eric Hanushek, argues that adequacy litigation is highly unlikely to improve educational outcomes for students attending poor school districts. Unfortunately, the book makes this case in an extremely biased fashion, which gives too little consideration to arguments on the other side. In the first chapter of the book, Sol Stern provides an overview of New York’s Campaign for Fiscal Equity case, in which the state high court ruled that the state failed to provide New York City’s... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: February 15, 2007
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 13382, Date Accessed: 10/18/2017 11:52:17 PM

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About the Author
  • Preston Green
    Penn State University
    E-mail Author
    PRESTON GREEN is Associate Professor in the Department of Education Policy Studies, Penn State University. He received a J.D. from Columbia University and an Ed.D. from Columbia University, Teachers College. His research focuses on the legal issues surrounding school choice and educational access. Recent publications include “Tricks of the Trade: State Legislative Actions in School Finance Policy that Perpetuate Racial Disparities in the Post-Brown Era” (American Journal of Education, 2005); “Urban Legends, Desegregation and School Finance: Did Kansas City Really Prove That Money Doesn’t Matter?” (Michigan Journal of Race & Law, 2006); and “Race-Conscious School Funding Strategies and School Finance Litigation" (Boston University Public Interest Law Review, in press). He is presently developing a joint degree program in law and education at Penn State.
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