Supreme Court OKs use of public money for religious education

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that state programs providing money for public school tuition cannot exclude schools that offer religious instruction.

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that state programs providing money for public school tuition cannot exclude schools that offer religious instruction.

The 6-3 decision relaxed long-standing restrictions on using taxpayer money to pay for religious education, further lowering the wall of separation between church and state. 

At issue was a state program in Maine that made taxpayer money available to families who live in remote areas without public high schools. Under the state law, they could use the money for their children's tuition at public or private schools in other communities, but not for sectarian schools, defined as those that promote a particular faith or belief system and teach material “through the lens of this faith.”  

The court’s ruling said the restriction amounted to a violation of religious freedom. 

Two years ago, in a case from Montana, the court ruled that when states make tuition money generally available, they cannot exclude schools that are run by religious institutions — that have, in other words, a religious status. But that decision left unresolved the issue of whether it would matter if the schools actually offered religious instruction. 

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/supreme-court-oks-use-public-money-religious-education-rcna21627


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