May 28, 2013 12:54 PM by Andy Koen
DENVER - In a 4-2 ruling Tuesday, the Colorado Supreme Court struck down a decades long lawsuit which asked the court to order the state legislature to increase funding for K-12 public education by roughly $4 billion.
The plaintiffs in the case Lobato v Colorado sought the additional funding on the grounds that current funding levels at poor, rural school districts did not meet the constitutional requirement for a "thorough and uniform" system of public education.
Writing the majority decision, Justice Nancy Rice stated it was the job of the state legislature and not the courts to determine levels of funding for the public school system.
"While the trial court's detailed findings of fact demonstrate that the current public school financing system might not be ideal policy, this Court's task is not to determine "whether a better financing system could be devised, but rather to determine whether the system passes Constitutional muster,'" Rice wrote.
Chief Justice Michael Bender and Justice Gregory Hobbs were the two dissenting votes on the Court. Bender wrote in his dissent, "Today, the majority abdicates this court's responsibility to give meaningful effect to the Education Clause's guarantee that all Colorado students receive a thorough and uniform education."
Colorado Springs School District 11 and Pueblo City Schools, (D60) were both included as plaintiffs in the lawsuit.