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Glennwood Springs – Make School Funding a Priority

Kathy Gebhardt, lead attorney for the plaintiffs in Lobato vs. State of Colorado, today applauded the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent for its editorial calling on state leaders to make school funding inequities an immediate priority.

“The newspaper agrees with the vast network of parents, school districts and state organizations that support the Lobato case,” she said. “The paper’s analysis and willingness to see the disparities is appreciated. The school funding inequities are real and addressing the underlying problems is something that should be done now—not after another year of waiting for the courts. The school districts can’t wait and the students can’t wait.”

The newspaper noted the “very different conversations” taking place within three school districts that serve Garfield County. One district is deciding how to spend a voter-approved mill levy increase. Two others are facing grim budget-cutting decisions. The “stark contrast,” the paper noted, “illustrates the need for a reliable, inviolate source of state education funding that doesn’t create economic disparity between school districts.”

The newspaper noted Denver District Court Judge Sheila Rappaport’s ruling that the current system is “irrational, arbitrary and underfunded” and lamented the decision by state leadership to appeal.

Instead of “heeding the call to action,” the newspaper said, “Gov. John Hickenlooper and the Colorado State board of education both opted to appeal the decision. This only further delays what inevitably must happen in Colorado…it needs to be fixed.”

The newspaper concluded that the issue should be “at the forefront of priorities for the governor, the state Legislature and state education officials.” Read the full editorial here: http://bit.ly/xkoOAJ.