Education Justice and Education Law Center research, analyze, and report on key public education issues to provide information and guidance for policy-makers, litigators, advocates, and others working to improve educational opportunities, especially for low-income and minority students. Our publications are available below. We also publish a periodic Education Justice Newsletter


Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card, 4th edition, 2015

The National Report Card has sparked a national dialogue about the condition of the 50 state school funding systems and improving funding fairness. It rates the 50 states on the basis of four "fairness measures:" funding level, funding distribution, state fiscal effort, and public school “coverage.” The Report Card provides the most in-depth look to date at school funding and finding that many states (1) do not fairly allocate education funding to address the needs of their disadvantaged students and (2) are funding below pre-recession levels despite rebounding revenues. 

Resource Accountability: Enforcing State Responsibilities for Sufficient and Equitable Resources Used Effectively to Provide All Students a Quality Education, 2015

Education Policy Analysis Archive (EPAA) published this paper by ELC's David Sciarra and Molly Hunter, written for the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education's (SCOPE's), which is led by noted educator Linda Darling-Hammond. The authors explore cutting-edge school finance reforms that include not only fair and adequate school funding, but also frameworks to ensure the "effective and efficient" use of funds. They explain that the current debate over state school finance often misses the crucial question of how states must put in place mechanisms to drive funding to support essential resources and research-proven programs, especially for schools serving high concentrations of students in poverty, English learners and students with disabilities.


Pre-K Policy Brief Series

formula for sucess policy briefThe Education Law Center has released three pre-k policy briefs, which are intended to serve as resources for policy makers seeking to maximize participation in state pre-k programs. Including Children with Disabilities in State Pre-K Programs and Access to Pre-K Education Under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act were produced with support provided by the Pew Charitable Trusts. Formula for Success: Adding High-Quality Pre-K to State School Funding Formulas was issued by Education Law Center, Pre-K Now, and the Pew Center on the States.




Michelle Fine et al., New Jersey Special Review Assessment (2007)


Cost Studies

Clive Belfield & Heather Schwartz, The Cost of High-Quality Pre-school Education in New Jersey (2007)



Molly A. Hunter, Use Race to Top Money for School Funding "Catastrophe" (2010)

Molly A. Hunter, FORD FOUNDATION DOING IT RIGHT!: Wall Street Journal Attacks Urban Education Initiative (2009)



David G. Sciarra, Koren L. Bell, & Susan Kenyon, Safe and Adequate: Using Litigation to Address Inadequate K-12 School Facilities (2006)

Molly A. Hunter, Building a Sustained School Facilities Remedy, Education, Equity, and the Law (2010)



David G. Sciarra, Danielle Farrie, & Bruce Baker Filling Budget Holes: Evaluating the Impact of ARRA Fiscal Stabilization Funds on State Funding Formulas (2010)

Letter to House Committee on Education and Labor Regarding ESEA Reauthorization, March 26, 2010

Letter to Senate HELP Committee Regarding ESEA Reauthorization, April 27, 2010


Funding Systems

Molly A. Hunter, Building a Sustained School Facilities Remedy, Education, Equity, and the Law (2010)



Molly A. Hunter, Requiring States to Offer a Quality Education to All Students (2005)

David G. Sciarra, Enhancing Court Capacity to Enforce Education Rights: Judicial Tools Used in Abbot v. Burke (2009)

Molly A. Hunter, Judicial Findings: Egregious Conditions in Public Schools, Appendix 2, No Time to Lose, Southern Education Foundation (2009)


Opportunity to Learn


Ellen Boylan, High Quality Pre-K as the First Step in Education Adequacy: Using the Courts to Expand Access to State Pre-K Programs (2007)

Ellen Boylan and Deborah Splansky, Including Children with Disabilities in State Pre-K Programs, Pre-K Policy Brief Series (2010)

Ellen Boylan and Deborah Splansky, Access to Pre-K Education Under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, Pre-K Policy Brief Series (2010)

Ellen Boylan and Shad White, Formula for Success: Adding High-Quality Pre-K to State School Funding Formulas, Pre-K Policy Brief Series (2010)