Ronald Britt, et al. v. North Carolina State Board of Education, et al. 257 SE2d 432. Court of Appeals of North Carolina. 7 July 1987.
This action for declaratory and injunctive relief was brought by minors enrolled in, or soon to be enrolled in, Robeson County Public Schools, and their parents and guardians. Defendants are the North Carolina State Board of Education, the state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, the five Robeson County school units, and others. The action was dismissed by the Robeson County Superior Court and is herein appealed. The plaintiffs allege that since the North Carolina Constitution mandates that “equal opportunities shall be provided for all students,” plaintiffs should receive declaratory and injunctive relief since North Carolina’s school funding system causes inequities in school programs and facilities between systems with large versus small tax bases. The plaintiffs’ complaint also alleges that the operation of Robeson County’s five separate school systems prohibits effective use of both state and local school funding and school facilities, thus violating the state constitution. The court concluded that “plaintiffs have alleged no facts which would support a claim for relief or confer jurisdiction upon the courts of the state. The judgment of the trial court is, therefore, affirmed” (p. 437). Above, the opinion states that the North Carolina Constitution made “no requirement that [the State] provide identical opportunities to each and every student” (p. 436).