Florida circuit court judge rules for state in education adequacy lawsuit
A Florida circuit court judge has dismissed a case alleging that the State Board of Education and, by extension, the Legislature had failed to meet their constitutional “paramount duty” of providing a uniform, efficient, safe, secure and high quality education for all public school children.
Judge George S. Reynolds III threw out all complaints in the Citizens for Strong Schools case, saying the defendants had failed to meet their burden of proof.
“The weight of the evidence shows that the State has made education a top priority both in terms of implementation of research-based education policies and reforms, as well as education funding,” Reynolds wrote in his 29-page judgment. “The State has an accountability and assessment system that is rated among the best in the nation, resulting in more ‘A’ grades schools over time. The State has also adopted rigorous teacher certification, training and evaluation standards, resulting in over 94% of courses being taught by teachers who are ‘highly qualified’ under federal standards.”