April 27, 2012

SandBoxBlogs: Iowa Republican "A Constitutional Right to Education?"

King v. State in Iowa was a disturbing outcome.  That 50% of the judicial panel were in favor of altering the constitution to mandate that public education become a constitutional right is difficult to absorb. 

Nathan Tucker:
"The answer to that question depends on which Iowa Supreme Court justice you ask, and whether or not it is a retention election year.  Despite a recent stretch of relative calm on the Court since last summer, justices gave vent to their disagreements in an extremely fractured case that produced five opinions and showed that at least one justice is fully cognizant of the voters he faces in November.

In King v. State of Iowa, sixteen students and parents sued the State, claiming “that Iowa’s educational system is not adequately serving students in either the largest  or the smallest school districts.”  They “alleged that there exists a ‘disparity in educational outcomes [in Iowa] based upon where one goes to school’ and there has been a ‘failure to provide similar educational opportunities for all of Iowa’s students.’”

The Plaintiffs argued that the State abridged their constitutional right to an education by failing “to establish standards, to enforce any standards, to adopt effective educator pay systems, and to establish and maintain an adequate education delivery system.”  They sought a court order directing the State to “undertake all suitable means to provide an effective education.”

While four of the Court’s seven justices ruled that, even if true, the Plaintiffs’ allegations did not arise to a constitutional violation, it is disturbing that five of the justices were, at a minimum, open to creating a constitutional right to an education out of judicial whole cloth...."  (Read more?  Click title)

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