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DeRolph vs. State of Ohio. By Kristen Chozinski. What’s it about?. School funding in the State of Ohio is inadequate and unequal. There is a huge disparity in equality in Ohio’s 612 school districts. What are some other expenses the state may have besides school funding?.

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derolph vs state of ohio

DeRolph vs. State of Ohio

By Kristen Chozinski

what s it about
What’s it about?
  • School funding in the State of Ohio is inadequate and unequal.
  • There is a huge disparity in equality in Ohio’s 612 school districts.
current funding system
Current Funding System
  • School funding has primarily relied on local property taxes
  • State revenues have been misused because they have been used to fund other state functions before the schools
current funding system problems
Current Funding System Problems
  • The school funding system does not provide regular growth in revenue.
  • Schools don’t receive additional taxes when a property’s value increases.
  • The distribution of state funds to schools is inadequate.
  • Spending per pupil in Ohio has the highest disparity.
current funding system problems6
Current Funding System Problems
  • School funding is a low priority.
  • Despite limitations in local tax growth, overall school taxation has stayed the same.
  • Inequities in distribution have become worse.
  • The need to constantly pass levies has resulted in an unstable system.
  • Inequity increased because of “phantom revenue”
as a result
As a result. . .

Schools in low income districts suffer with:

  • Lack of supplies
  • Overcrowding
  • Small classrooms
  • Lack of appropriate books
  • Poor transportation
derolph vs state of ohio8
DeRolph vs. State of Ohio
  • E&A Coalition filed a suit against the State of Ohio because they found the condition and tools of Ohio’s schools to prohibit opportunity for success.
  • By filing the case, the Coalition hoped the State would be forced to remedy the problem.

12/19/91 2nd Complaint filed by E&A Coalition in Perry County

10/25/93 Trial begins and lasts 30 days

7/1/94 Judge Lewis found Ohio’s school funding to be unconstitutional

9/10/96 Oral arguments presented before Supreme Court

3/24/97 The Supreme Court ruled funding system unconstitutional


2/18/98 State filed for extension on deadline

3/11/98 Motion for extension denied

9/1/98 Supreme Court rules that State needs to show evidence that the mandates have been fulfilled

5/11/00 Court gives State until 6/15/01 to bring system into compliance

9/6/01 Ohio’s school funding system remains unconstitutional

what did the court say
What did the court say?
  • Supreme Court ruled the current funding system to be unconstitutional
  • The Court stated that the state shall provide for a “thorough and efficient system of public schools”
  • The state must provide evidence of improvement in school funding system
what s next
What’s Next?
  • State must alleviate heavy reliance upon local property taxes
    • Funds from State should be used for schools
  • State plans to work from lowest wealth districts up through all 612 districts
    • Claims all districts will be repaired in 12 years and cost about $750 million per year
what s next13
What’s Next?
  • Action Plan for Implementing DeRolph
    • Goal 1 “Create an Inventory”
    • Goal 2 “Establish High Quality System”
      • Step 1 “Develop equal standards for all schools”
      • Step 2 “Establish per-pupil funding level”
      • Step 3 “Design funding plan for all schools”
    • Goal 3 “Abolish SSA Fund”
    • Goal 4 “Fund the Mandates”

Hopefully someday all schools across America will be equally funded and able to provide an equal education for all students.