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 Article of Interest - Recent Court Cases

Schools File Adair Brief
from MIRS, 2-26-03
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Michigan's 464 plaintiff school districts in the Adair v. Michigan case filed their brief in the Supreme Court this month in their effort to receive full-funding for mandated state programs and services as required by the Headlee Amendment.

With the plaintiffs filing their brief, the state has 35 days to file a brief in support of its position, after which the court will schedule oral arguments.

The 18-year case, sometimes referred to as “Durant IV,” deals with the schools claiming that between 1979-1995 the state of Michigan did not give schools money to pay for a variety of administrative rule changes and the increased number of hours that teachers were required to work.

The state, in essence, gave local school districts several unfunded mandates, which are in violation of the Headlee Amendment, they claimed. However a majority of the appeals judges ruled that all but one of the plaintiff's claims could have been raised in the Durant case, in which the state paid hundreds of school districts money for unfunded mandates since 1979.

“We hold fast to our position that the state is absolutely and unequivocally bound by the State Constitution to provide the funding for schools to meet state mandated programs and services,” said the school's attorney Dennis POLLARD.

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