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Mercer Island schools will consider joining lawsuit against state for a $7,000 fee

The Mercer Island Schools Foundation will present the Mercer Island School Board of Directors with a check at next Thursday’s regular meeting. The MISF and the district’s PTA organizations helped raise $850,000 for the district.

The board will also hold a work and deliberation session to discuss the Islander Middle School improvement plan, part of a review of each school’s plan, as well as an update on the Network for Excellence in Washington Schools (NEWS) Lawsuit.

The lawsuit, brought forth by a coalition of parents, teachers and school districts, alleged that the state has not amply funded education, and the Washington Superior Court agreed. The state has since appealed the courts decision to the Washington Supreme Court, contesting the ruling which orders the state to determine the actual cost of amply providing education to public schools and to fund the actual dollar cost with “stable and dependable state funding.”

The district administration will ask the board to approve a resolution to support the NEWS coalition as it works to get the state to fund education, as is outlined in the state constitution. If the school board approves the resolution, the district will join the coalition and pay a one-time fee of $7,646 in support of the cause. The coalition has estimated that the appeal will cost approximately $950,000.

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