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Supreme Court Rejects Maine's Ban on Aid to Religious Schools

Added 06-21-22 04:40:03pm EST - “The decision was the latest in a series of rulings forbidding the exclusion of religious institutions from government programs.” - Nytimes.com

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Nytimes.com: “Supreme Court Rejects Maine’s Ban on Aid to Religious Schools”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

The decision was the latest in a series of rulings forbidding the exclusion of religious institutions from government programs.

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that Maine may not exclude religious schools from a state tuition program. The decision, from a court that has grown exceptionally receptive to claims from religious people and groups in a variety of settings, was the latest in a series of rulings requiring the government to aid religious institutions on the same terms as other private organizations.

The case, Carson v. Makin, No. 20-1088, arose from an unusual program in Maine, which requires rural communities without public secondary schools to arrange for their young residents’ educations in one of two ways. They can sign contracts with nearby public schools, or they can pay tuition at a private school chosen by parents so long as it is, in the words of a state law, “a nonsectarian school in accordance with the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.”

Two families in Maine that send or want to send their children to religious schools challenged the law, saying it violated their right to freely exercise their faith.

One of the schools at issue in the case, Temple Academy in Waterville, Maine, says it expects its teachers “to integrate biblical principles with their teaching in every subject” and teaches students “to spread the word of Christianity.” The other, Bangor Christian Schools, says it seeks to develop “within each student a Christian worldview and Christian philosophy of life.”

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