Lufkin ISD proceeds with plans to sue the State of Texas

Roy Knight, Lufkin ISD Superintendent
Roy Knight, Lufkin ISD Superintendent
Trent Ashby, Lufkin ISD School Board President
Trent Ashby, Lufkin ISD School Board President

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin ISD superintendent, Roy Knight, is leading the push to sue the State of Texas.

"We can't keep making lemonade out of lemons because all we've got left now are lemon seeds," said Knight.

"There's an inherent inequity in the current funding system, so the board action taken tonight was really to compel the legislature to act and try to bring some fairness back into our school funding system in Texas," said LISD School Board President, Trent Ashby.

Knight and school board members tell us this is the only way for the state to acknowledge there is a problem with funding public schools.

"We've literally robbed from the poor so the wealthy can keep more of theirs," said Knight.

85 percent of all Texas school districts receive more money than Lufkin. Since the property tax rate was set in 2006, Knight says the district has lost 11 million dollars.

"School districts across the state have lost substantial amounts of funding, really for nothing, for no reason other than their zip code," said Ashby.

In a unanimous vote, LISD is joining more than 300 other schools in a lawsuit.

"Poverty knows no distinct region. They're from south Texas to the Panhandle, from El Paso to Lufkin," said Knight.

The lawsuit doesn't seek to reclaim any money, just reach a level of fairness.

Lufkin administrators hope a victory would allow the district to re-hire teachers, re-open cut programs, and save early childhood programs.

"This lawsuit is an attempt to try to ensure that our taxpayers are paying taxes that benefit our local school children," said Ashby.

The suit will cost the district around 10 thousand dollars, money that will be reimbursed if they win.

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