Education lawsuit clears another hurdle
For Immediate Release: August 12, 2008
Contact: Joe Martin, 404-872-9651, www.casfg.org
ATLANTA - Judge Elizabeth E. Long has issued a major ruling in the lawsuit brought by the Consortium for Adequate School Funding in Georgia. In an order signed yesterday, she denied the Motion for Summary Judgment that had been filed by the State of Georgia on May 30, 2008. Her ruling clears the way for the trial in this case to begin on October 21, 2008, in the Superior Court of Fulton County.
Dr. Jeffery C. Welch, Superintendent of the Oglethorpe County Schools and President of the Consortium, praised this action. “It has been a long and difficult process, but we are close to the point where our attorneys will be able to explain in a court of law why the State of Georgia is not meeting its responsibility in the education of our students,” he said.
The purpose of a Motion for Summary Judgment is to request an early decision based on the “undisputed facts” in the case. The State’s attorneys, Sutherland, Asbill & Brennan, presented a long list of facts, which they contended are not in dispute, and asked Judge Long to decide the case on that basis. They argued that the State of Georgia is doing all it is legally required to do under its own laws and that any problems in education are beyond its control.
The attorneys for the Consortium, Rogers & Hardin, strongly disagreed and argued that substantial evidence will be presented at the trial to prove that the State is not fulfilling its clear obligation under the Georgia Constitution to provide an adequate education for all of its students.
Joseph G. Martin, Jr., Executive Director of the Consortium, noted that the problems in the financing of Georgia’s schools are the most acute in rural areas, but explained that the remedy being sought by the Consortium would benefit all of the schools across our state. He reiterated the willingness of the Consortium to negotiate a reasonable settlement of the case.
He continued by saying, “At its core, this lawsuit is about the opportunities promised to our students by the Georgia Constitution. Money isn’t everything, but the fact remains that our schools must have enough resources to provide the basic elements of a modern education.”
For further information, contact Joe Martin at 404-872-9651 or visit the Consortium's website at www.casfg.org.
# # #