Lawsuit: Delaware schools leave kids in poverty behind (Jessica Bies)

This report begins with the sad story of 10-year-old Tylan Raburnels, a 4th grader at Stubb's Elementary School in Wilmington (Christiana School District). Tylan is black. 86% of the students at his school come from low-income families and an even higher percentage are black. He doesn't bring homework home. He lacks "the tools to study at home and improve.." His mother can't afford to hire a tutor, and he doesn't have a father at home. She believes the school is doing their best, but doesn't have "enough resources to support students struggling with mental or behavioral problems."

Cutting to the chase, Delawareans for Education and the Delaware NAACP have filed suit demanding additional funding for high need schools (schools in low-income districts). It is claimed that "the system provides more support for children who are well off than it provides for children living in poverty," Similar suits have been filed in 45 states. More money is demanded for low-income students, special education students and English language learners. And while courts have traditionally been disinclined to get involved in such issues, and it's early days as to what the Delaware courts will do, the trend is for judges to start taking such cases.

In theory, more funding for disadvantaged students could be provided by redistributing funds versus raising taxes, but the Carney administration hasn't warmed up to that idea. Time will tell what happens.

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