Students sue, say poor county's school funds unfairly shared

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - If local schools are so underfunded that children aren't getting a good shot at a sound, basic education, should county officials who control local tax dollars share some of the blame?

North Carolina's top court on Monday heard arguments in a lawsuit addressing that question and seeking to improve funding in a poor, rural community with three racially segregated school districts operated by city or county boards.

Parents and students in Halifax County sued the county commissioners, arguing they haven't fairly distributed sales tax money.

Lawyers for the county say if school board officials think they're getting short-shrift in county money, it's up to them and not students to sue.

A lower appeals court ruled county officials aren't responsible and students should take their complaints to legislators and the governor.

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