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Education A State Capitals Roundup

N.J. Court Allows Aid Freeze in State’s Poorest Districts

By Catherine Gewertz — May 23, 2006 1 min read

The New Jersey Supreme Court has granted Gov. Jon S. Corzine’s request to hold funding for the state’s poorest school districts flat for the 2006-07 school year.

Gov. Jon S. Corzine

In a unanimous May 9 ruling, the state’s high court said the 31 Abbott districts—which got their name from long-running litigation over how to properly fund poor school districts—would have to make do with about the same amount of aid in 2006-07 that they did in 2005-06.

The court ruled that the districts could appeal the budgets the state sets for their districts if they could show that a “demonstrably needed” program would be “substantially impaired” by too little funding.

Gov. Corzine, a Democrat, had sought the flat funding in the face of a projected $4 billion budget shortfall. He said it was part of a larger effort to make sure districts were using their state aid efficiently, and, eventually, to review school funding statewide.

A version of this article appeared in the May 24, 2006 edition of Education Week