David Hinojosa, J.D.

Key Issues in the Texas School Funding Trial – Podcast Episode 155 | Classnotes Podcast 155

Classnotes Podcast (August 31, 2015) Texas in the midst of the largest school finance lawsuit in the state’s history. Over 500 school districts enrolling three-fourths of Texas school children, as well as parents, students, the Texas Charter School Association and others, sued the State for failing to ensure a quality education for all students. On the eve of oral arguments before the Texas Supreme Court, David Hinojosa, J.D., IDRA national director of policy, gives a quick outline of key issues facing the court and the state. The hearing comes 369 days after the Texas District Court ruled that the state’s funding system is “constitutionally inadequate, unsuitable and financially inefficient.”

Much is at stake as the court decides whether or not to ensure that the state provides equal educational opportunity not for just some, but for all, of its children. The most recent research shows that increases in school funding have led to increased educational achievement and lifetime circumstances, including increased earnings, and that the effects bear a significant causal relationship for economically disadvantaged students. This study and others were cited convincingly by Texas-based organizations and the Education Law Center in an amicus brief submitted in the current school finance case. David is interviewed by Laurie Posner, MPA, IDRA’s Director of Civic Engagement.

Show length: 08:40

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Texas School Finance News Dashboard 
IDRA has created a dashboard to collect news about the Texas school finance trial for easy access for parents, school folk & communities. You can see the latest news stories, live tweets, images, etc.

Amicus brief
by the national Education Law Center (ELC) along with the Center for Public Policy Priorities, Mexican American School Board Members Association (MASBA), San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Texas Appleseed, Texas Association for Bilingual Education, Texas HOPE, and Texas NAACP. See an overview of the brief and link to the full text here.

Court listing and links to all amicus briefs in the case

Texas Supreme Court has opportunity to improve public education – Constitution requires — and our students deserve — equality
By Al Kauffman, for the San Antonio Express-News, August 30, 2015

Infographic on the Texas School Funding Equity
See IDRA’s updated graphic showing how some children are considered more valuable than others in Texas

IDRA Statement: Court Rules Again: Texas School Funding Must Serve All Students Equitably
August 28, 2014

50 Most Memorable Quotes in School Finance
Compiled by IDRA’s founder, Dr. José A. Cárdenas, in 1994

Funding Texas Schools: Fair Or Falling Short? 
Five-part radio series by education reporter Laura Isensee at Houston Public Media News 88.7 that takes a look into the past, present and future of public school funding in Texas.

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Show Notes

  • David shares the historical background and circumstances of the current Texas school finance case.

  • David addresses the inadequacies of the State of Texas’s current financial investment in public education.

  • David outlines the arguments that Texas is making in its court appeal.

  • David considers what the Texas Constitution says about children’s rights to a quality education.

  • David urges students and families to get involved in the legislative process on educational equity.

  • David closes with the hope that the Texas Supreme Court will uphold the ruling of the district court.