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  • Issue Brief: CCJEF v. Rell Court Decision

    This issue brief from the Connecticut General Assembly's Office of Legislative Research summarizes Connecticut Superior Court Judge Thomas Moukawsher's September 7, 2016 ruling in Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding (CCJEF) v. Rell. The issue brief details the case's history along with Judge Moukawsher's findings.

  • CCJEF v. Rell (2016), Moukawsher Superior Court Ruling

    Hartford Superior Court Judge Thomas Moukawsher ruled partially in favor of the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding in a lengthy, wide-reaching decision regarding Connecticut's school finance system. Judge Moukawsher found several parts of Connecticut's education system, including how the State distributes education aid, and gave the State 180 days to submit proposed changes to address the parts of Connecticut's education system that he found unconstitutional.

  • CCJEF v. Rell (2010)

    The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled a lower court erred in dismissing claims filed in 2005 by the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding. CCJEF filed suit on behalf of students and families, contending the state’s failure to properly fund public schools inadequately prepares students for higher education and employment opportunities. The Court held the state constitution requires "public schools provide their students with an education suitable to give them the opportunity to be responsible citizens able to participate fully in democratic institutions, such as jury service and voting, and to prepare them to progress to institutions of higher education, or to attain productive employment and otherwise to contribute to the state's economy." The decision allows plaintiffs to continue to pursue their suit that the state has failed to adequately fund its lowest-performing schools.

  • Sheff v. O'Neill (1996)

    In a 4-3 decision, the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled the state had an affirmative obligation to provide Connecticut's school children with a substantially equal educational opportunity and that this constitutionally guaranteed right encompasses the access to a public education, which is not substantially and materially impaired by racial and ethnic isolation. The Court further concluded that school districting, based upon town and city boundary lines, is unconstitutional. As a result of the decision, the Connecticut State Legislature passed legislation in 1997 encouraging voluntary actions toward racial integration.

  • Horton v. Meskill (1977)

    Connecticut Supreme Court ruling holding that the right to education in Connecticut is so basic and fundamental that any intrusion on the right must be strictly scrutinized. The Court said that public school students are entitled to equal enjoyment of the right to education and a system of school financing that relied on local property tax revenues without regard to disparities in town wealth, and that lacked significant equalizing state support, was unconstitutional. Connecticut Supreme Court also held the creation of a constitutional system for education financing is a job for the legislature and not the courts.