[Rushtalk] Supreme Court Hands Down Huge Victory on School Choice

Carl Spitzer {C Juno} cwsiv at juno.com
Mon Aug 1 07:00:14 MDT 2022


 



Supreme Court Hands Down Huge Victory on School Choice


 


The Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that Maine’s tuition assistance
program must cover religious schools.

In a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court struck down a Maine program that
gave tuition aid for students to attend private schools but excluded
schools offering religious instruction, arguing that it violated the
Free Exercise Clause of the 1st Amendment.
 



“Maine has enacted a program of tuition assistance for parents who live
in school districts that do not operate a secondary school of their own.
Under the program, parents designate the secondary school they would
like their child to attend—public or private—and the school district
transmits payments to that school to help defray the costs of tuition.
Most private schools are eligible to receive the payments, so long as
they are ‘nonsectarian,’” wrote Chief Justice John Roberts.

“The question presented is whether this restriction violates the Free
Exercise Clause of the First Amendment,” he added.

The majority opinion stated that the Free Exercise Clause of the First
Amendment protects individuals from “indirect coercion or penalties on
the free exercise of religion, not just outright prohibitions.”

“A State’s [anti-establishment] interest does not justify enactments
that exclude some members of the community from an otherwise generally
available public benefit because of their religious exercise,” read the
opinion.

The ruling is being celebrated as a win for school choice advocates, but
as per usual, liberals are throwing a tantrum over the Supreme Court’s
decision.

“Where #SCOTUS is heading: All parents get vouchers and they can send
their kids to public or parochial schools. ‘Separation of church and
state’ is a vanishing concept at the Supreme Court,” tweeted CNN legal
analyst Jeffrey Toobin.

“This Court continues to dismantle the wall of separation between church
and state that the Framers fought to build,” wrote Justice Sonia
Sotomayor.

Left-wing media such as the National Public Radio also joined the
anti-choice narrative to paint school choice advocates in a bad light
while omitting facts stated in the opinion.

“NPR never fails to take the most hostile framing. The actual case says
Maine’s tuition assistance program can’t discriminate against parents
who want to send their kids to sectarian schools,” noted one Twitter
user of NPR’s biased reporting of the ruling.
  




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