Another local headline, another news item about education, but yet this one strikes me as almost humorous. It has been reported that parents in the East Bay are suing the state. Why, you may ask? Because the state has not addressed the "broken" way that the education system is funded in the state, and these parents (as well as several school districts in the state, who filed a prior lawsuit in May) want to force the Governor and the Legislature to change and amend this.
So our society is so litigious that we now have to sue the state in order to initiate change? Quite comical, really.
As I was growing up, I was instructed by my parents that the three areas of government that must be funded and given priority were: education, infrastructure, and the penal system. We must make sure that everyone is educated through high school (and, in my view, at least a bit beyond), we must make sure that the roads and canals and such all are in best working order, and we must make sure that the baddies are locked up and can't get out. Once those areas are addressed, then you go on to the other items. And I would argue that most people wouldn't mind a rise in taxes for any of those purposes *if* the money was well spent and done in an effective manner. I think that's still true. And while technically there are laws in place protecting the spending (or preventing of major cuts) with regard to education in this state, they are often either ignored--at least, it seems to me to be that way. Meanwhile, the Legislature hasn't passed a budget on-time and in-balance in so long, I don't honestly know when the last time was...I'm not being facitious, I really don't think it's been in my adult life. It's not a pretty site in Sacramento right now, nor anywhere else for that matter. And the people are fed up. Weak leadership plus a Legislature that feels like they can stall all they want (to hell with the people), well, it leads to this.
Somehow I still expect the lawsuits will have no effect, that things will continue. Not that I'm a cynic...well, I am, but that's not the case here. I very much doubt that the Courts will find that they have jurisdiction to tell the Governor and the Legislature to get their heads out of their asses and fix anything. That would be legislating from the bench, something that the Courts are not allowed to do, and dare I say are not usually prone to doing. But will it lead to change regardless...I truly hope so.