COURTS, DOLLARS AND SCHOOLS: THE CALIFORNIA SCHOOL FINANCE LITIGATION AND ITS AFTERMATH
AuthorTaylor, J. M. (John Michael)
KeywordsSchools -- California.
Education -- California -- Finance.
Educational law and legislation -- California.
AdvisorCortner, Richard C.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractDuring recent years, courts in the United States have in many instances attempted to force other agencies of government to take some sort of affirmative action. In doing so, they have sought repeatedly to force those other agencies to act where, left to their own accord, they would choose not to do so. A specific example of a situation of this sort is the United States Supreme Court's entry into the field of race relations with the issuance of the Brown decision in 1954. Quite obviously, in rendering that decision, the nation's highest court was seeking to force local school boards to act in a manner distinctly at odds with how they would otherwise have chosen to proceed. In the Brown situation and others like it, a crucial question which has arisen is this: to what degree is a court able to force other agencies to act where they otherwise would not? It is, moreover, with this question that this dissertation is concerned. Specifically, this volume seeks to explore the capability of the courts to force unwilling agencies to act in a manner opposed to their natural inclination by exploring the California school finance litigation and the legislative responses to it. What this exploration leads to is the conclusion that, although courts can and do force other agencies to act, their ability to do so is nonetheless limited. Specifically, it would appear that courts can act as agenda setters, thereby forcing other agencies of government to at least consider issues they otherwise would have ignored. Courts also, it would seem, can play some role in the molding of the substantive provisions of a given policy. There, though, their impact would appear not to be a particularly great one; rather, in that regard it would seem that all they are capable of doing is simply prodding other policy-makers in a given direction but little more. Indeed, it would appear that the capacity of courts to act as actual molders of substantive policy is seriously undercut by the fact that the decisions they issue are merely one component of the overall political environment with which nonjudicial officials must be concerned.
Degree ProgramGraduate College