A coalition of school districts that won a lengthy legal battle to force increases in state financial support of public education has asked the Kansas Supreme Court to reopen the case in light of recent state budget cuts.

More than 70 school districts joined the group Schools for Fair Funding to finance the litigation. Each district is paying about $5 per student, with legal expenses estimated at $500,000.

The court ruled in 2005 that the education funding formula developed by the Legislature was not sufficient. State aid to public education has increased by $600 million since then, but budget cuts in 2009 have reduced school funding to pre-2006 levels.

The school group wants the court to determine if the current funding formula is constitutional based on its 2005 decision, and if the reductions to public education violate the state constitution.

An attorney for the districts said reopening the case would bring it to trial about six months quicker than filing a new lawsuit.

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