Four days before the midterms elections – some great news for North Carolina public schools.
In the eighteen years since, despite some steps forward and back, the foundational basis for the ruling of Leandro II has remained unchanged: today, as in 2004, far too many North Carolina schoolchildren, especially those historically marginalized, are not afforded their constitutional right to the opportunity to asound basic education. As foreshadowed in Leandro II, the State has proven—for an entire generation—either unable or unwilling to fulfill its constitutional duty.
Now, this Court must determine whether that duty is a binding obligation or an unenforceable suggestion. We hold the former: the State may not indefinitely violate the constitutional rights of North Carolina schoolchildren without consequence. Our Constitution is the supreme law of the land; it is not optional. In exercising its powers under the Appropriations Clause, the General Assembly must also comply with its duties under the Education Provisions.
WRAL.com posted a report about the court’s decision today.
And in that report is link to a 20 minute documentary about the Leandro case that chronicles a this years long fight to fully fund public schools in North Carolina.
Today’s ruling on Leandro funding obviously has been widely shared, but Billy Corriher (@BillyCorriher) has a great Twitter thread highlighting some of the key aspects of the 227-page ruling document.
Please also notice who wrote the dissenting opinion: Phil Berger, Jr., the son of the very man whose name appears on the case as a defendant whose energies have gone into keeping Leandro from being funded.