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date: 25 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

In terms of the history of the US federal system, the intervention of the courts in K-12 education is relatively recent. This article explains that the basis for going to court, which in nearly all cases is based on state and not US constitutional grounds, has changed from lawsuits based on equity and equal protection to that of the now more-frequent set of adequacy lawsuits that put a greater emphasis on education outcomes. The article then turns to the topic of how public education is financed. Recognizing the differences among the states, it examines the split among governments in how they provide school revenues. It next discusses current and future challenges for the delivery of education services and finance. The article concludes that even with elementary and secondary education becoming more essential for national growth and competitiveness, fiscal pressures make it difficult to be optimistic about the future of education.

Keywords: K-12 education, US federal system, education financing, public education, education outcome, national growth

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