DENVER - This whole fight started when Taylor Lobato was in middle school. Now, she's a junior in college still fighting to create what she calls a fair school system.
WATCH: Live stream of Lobato case
"What a unique opportunity it is for me not to represent myself, but to represent the students of Colorado everywhere," said Lobato, a student at the University of Denver.
It will be months before the Supreme Court issues a ruling, which could have a major affect on the state budget.
Attorneys representing dozens of school districts faced off with the state over school funding. Parents and school districts argue the Colorado's funding is unfair to school districts outside of the Denver Metro area. The state insists it has met its obligation.
"We're a wealthy state," said Kathleen Gebhardt, founder of Children's Voices, a non-profit law firm which advocates for education. "We're in the top 10 for wealth and in the bottom for funding our students."
Gebhardt is an attorney representing the plaintiffs in the lawsuit of Lobato vs. the State of Colorado. The lawsuit, which has been initially upheld in district court, states that school funding is not equal across the state of Colorado and that is a violation of the state constitution.
According to the Colorado Department of Education and Gebhardt, schools receive an average of $6,474 per pupil in tax dollars.
"And, that puts us well into the bottom quadrant of all other states," Gebhardt said. "That worries me greatly about Colorado."
Gebhardt says depending spending fluctuations of other states, Colorado consistently ranks between 45th and 50th in terms of per pupil funding nationwide, about $2,000 per pupil lower than the national average.
"So, what that translates into is we're not able to provide the programs and services that we know work for kids," Gebhardt said.
Plus, Terry Miller, an attorney for the plaintiffs' argues that the state does not even have a standard for what is supposed to be a "thorough and uniform" school system as mandated by the state constitution.
"There was no fiscal policy judgement to refer to," said Miller. "That's the core of our case."
David Hinojosa is a lawyer representing Latino families in the case. He says the state's high achievement gap between minorities and caucausian students is indiciative of the unfairness of the entire system.
"The state's funding scheme for (English Language Learners) and low-income students is grossly arbitrary, irrational, and inadequate to meet their needs," said Hinojosa, attorney with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund.
But, there are others who say those numbers reported by the state are not entirely accurate.
"The main one is that per pupil revenue," said Ben DeGrow, senior education policy analyst with the Independence Institute. "If you look at just that piece, you can cite those figures, but to do that is ignoring all tax dollars coming into schools."
The Independence Institute is a conservative think-tank located in Denver.
"Colorado actually ranks closer to the middle than to the bottom," DeGrow said. "You'll see Colorado ranked even as high as 29th."
DeGrow says the real per pupil funding total is much higher than $6,474.
"Federal dollars, it comes from additional local tax dollars and even other state programs that fund education," DeGrow said. "When you look at it, it's actually closer to $10,000 per student."
Gebhardt disagrees with that number.
"Oh, $10,000-a-year would be unimaginable for almost anybody in Colorado," Gebhardt said. "It would be a nice problem to have, but it's not one we currently have."
Out of the money allocated per pupil, about 80 percent is spent on salaries, paying for teachers and other staff members. The rest is spent on materials and facilities, according to Gebhardt.
But, DeGrow says schools are paying too much into the state retirement fund and for district bureaucracies such as administrators. He says hiring practices also don't reflect efficient spending.
"We've been hiring more employees for K-12 education than there's been growth in students," DeGrow said.
Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Fero says the fact that Colorado students outperforms the national average on standardized tests shows that the education system is fair.
"Money is not the only way to establish a 'thorough and uniform' system of schools," said Fero. "It also shows that Colorado's public system is based on more than money."
Fero says legislators already has discretion to come up with a system which best fits their interpretation of a "thorough and uniform" school system.
"Discretion to decide what type of system to establish and what is the best manner and means of maintaining it," said Fero.
If the Lobatos win, the Supreme Court could order the legislature to define and achieve a way of establishing a "thorough and uniform" school finance system. If the state wins, the status quo will likely remain.
Growing up with this case on her shoulders, Lobato just wants to provide a fair chance for all kids in Colorado.
"Even if the court does rule in our favor, we have a long way to go. The legislature has a long way to go," said Lobato. "It won't be a win until the legislature is providing an education system that provides for every single student in the state."
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