Supreme Court Will Hear Case on Law Excluding Religious Schools From State Funding

Friday's Supreme Court decision was to hear a case involving a Maine Department of Education law that exempts religious schools from public tuition funding.The court said it would hear Carson V. Makin, a case by Maine parents challenging a tuition assistance program that grants funds for parents who don't have easy access to public schools. This allows them to send their children non-sectarian private schools.In the amicus brief, the parents argued that Maine's law, exclusion of religious schools, violates their rights under Section 1A of the First Amendment.The parents argued that it prohibits other-qualified religious secondary schools from receiving funds to secondary schools that comply with Maine's basic school approval requirements. This is because they are religiously qualified. This discriminatory restriction is against our Constitution and cannot be sustained.In October 2020, the United States Court of Appeals for 1st Circuit ruled against the parents. It ruled that Maine was merely refusing to subsidize religious education and wasn't violating religious rights.Maine does not discriminate based on religious affiliation of private schools. In fact, Maine is declining to pay for religious instruction that is not available in public schools, stated Aaron Frey, Maine Attorney General, in a statement after the decision.>>> See the story of a Washington, D.C. student who has benefited from school choiceIn June 2020, the Supreme Court heard a similar case and ruled that state funding bans for religious schools were unconstitutional. States must provide subsidies for private schools as well as religious schools.The state does not have to subsidise private education. Chief Justice John Roberts stated that a state can decide to subsidize private education, but it cannot exclude some private schools because they are religious.According to The Associated Press, court papers supporting the Maine tuition program were filed by The American Civil Liberties Union.The Daily Caller News Foundation provides content free of charge to all news publishers that are able to reach a large audience. Please contact [email protected] for licensing opportunities.Do you have a comment about this article? Send us an email at [email protected] with your comments. We may publish them in our We Hear You section. Include the URL of the article or the headline, along with your name and the town/state.