Tex. Higher-Ed. Funding Is Found Unconstitutional

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

Texas's system of funding higher education is unconstitutional and unfairly hinders the higher-education opportunities of the largely Hispanic residents in the state's border region, a district-court jury has found.

The jury also declared last month that the current higher-education funding system has had an adverse economic impact on all residents of the region, which encompasses 41 counties between El Paso, San Antonio, Corpus Christi, and the Mexican border, and in particular on Mexican- Americans. More than 20 percent of the state's population lives in the region.

The verdict did not, however, implicate the defendants--Gov. Ann W. Richards, the leaders of 13 state systems of higher education, and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board--in deliberately discriminating against Hispanics.

The League of United Latin American Citizens brought the suit, LULAC v. Richards, on behalf of several Latino organizations, including the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and individual students.

Cameron County District Court Judge Benjamin Euresti is expected soon to enter a judgment in the case, although the defendants are mulling an appeal.

"We're still considering our next move, and we have to meet with the attorney general before we do anything," said Leticia Vasquez, assistant press secretary for Ms. Richards.

The plaintiffs charged that residents of the border region had a more difficult time in pursuing doctoral studies. They contended that there are lower spending levels on university libraries, that it takes four times longer on average to reach a comprehensive university in the region than in other parts of the state, and that only 7 of the more than 700 doctoral programs in the state are located in South Texas.

"There are essentially no choices there for students who can't move away," said Susan E. Brown, the director of higher-education programs for MALDEF. "We hope there will be the beginning of equitable funding in that part of the state, which is predominantly Hispanic and poor."

Ms. Brown said the plaintiffs will ask Judge Euresti to force the state to withhold higher-education funds until comprehensive universities are located in the region.

-- M.P.

Vol. 11, Issue 14, Page 18

Published in Print: December 4, 1991, as Tex. Higher-Ed. Funding Is Found Unconstitutional
Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories





Sponsor Insights

Free Ebook: How to Implement a Coding Program in Schools

Successful Intervention Builds Student Success

Effective Ways to Support Students with Dyslexia

Stop cobbling together your EdTech

Integrate Science and ELA with Informational Text

Can self-efficacy impact growth for ELLs?

Disruptive Tech Integration for Meaningful Learning

Building Community for Social Good

5 Resources on the Power of Interoperability from Unified Edtech

New campaign for UN World Teachers Day

5 Game-Changers in Today’s Digital Learning Platforms

Hiding in Plain Sight - 7 Common Signs of Dyslexia in the Classroom

The research: Reading Benchmark Assessments

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

All Students Are Language Learners: The Imagine Learning Language Advantage™

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

How to Support All Students with Equitable Pathways

2019 K-12 Digital Content Report

3-D Learning & Assessment for K–5 Science

Climate Change, LGBTQ Issues, Politics & Race: Instructional Materials for Teaching Complex Topics

Closing the Science Achievement Gap

Evidence-based Coaching: Key Driver(s) of Scalable Improvement District-Wide

Advancing Literacy with Large Print

Research Sheds New Light on the Reading Brain

Tips for Supporting English Learners Through Personalized Approaches

Response to Intervention Centered on Student Learning

The Nonnegotiable Attributes of Effective Feedback

SEE MORE Insights >