State to appeal decision invalidating requirement that local districts fund part of education

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JUNEAU, Alaska — The state plans to appeal a court ruling that invalidated a requirement that local school districts help pay for education.

The Department of Law, in a release, also said the state will request a stay of the ruling. It says that would ensure municipalities continue contributing until the case is decided by the Alaska Supreme Court or the school funding system is changed by the Legislature, another option.

A judge in November found the contribution was a dedicated fund, violating a state constitutional provision. The lawsuit was filed by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough.

Attorney General Craig Richards says Alaska has a history of local governments, the state and federal aid contributing to education. He says the state believes in the constitutionality of a system of shared support and local control.

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