Date of Award

5-2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Educational Leadership

Advisor

Flanigan, Jackson L.

Committee Member

Campbell , Carl M.

Committee Member

Paige , William D.

Committee Member

Ricciardi , Patricia D.

Abstract

As of June 2008, forty five of the fifty states have been involved in some form of litigation challenging the constitutionality of their State's K-12 public school funding system. South Carolina is among those 45 states.
The purpose of this study was to review and analyze the course of events within the court case Abbeville v. the State of South Carolina as the plaintiffs pursued a more equitable source of funding for public education. This study was also to provide a historical account of the litigations challenging the constitutionality of K-12 funding across the nation.
In 1993 forty of the eighty school districts in the state of South Carolina filed suit against the State of South Carolina to provide a better system of funding that was equitable to all children. As the court case unfolded, the position shifted from an equitable solution to an adequate solution.
Data for the research was utilized to describe a chronological sequence of events as the litigations moved back and forth from the trial court to the South Carolina Supreme Court. The data also provided information from other court cases across the nation in which the Plaintiffs were pursuing legal actions in an effort to provide equitable funding for their State. Data was collected from three primary sources: court documents, electronic articles, interviews with State school officials, and interviews with participants in the Abbeville v. the State of South Carolina court litigation. A conceptual framework of the study was developed to illustrate the art of triangulation as a research tool in an effort to accurately report the findings in a chronological and historical sequence.

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