Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), representing over 2,000 rabbis in matters of American public policy, today celebrated the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Carson v. Makin, striking down a Maine law that denied subsidies of the costs of fulfilling state secular education requirements to parents who chose sectarian schooling for their children. The decision, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, impacts other forms of tuition assistance in states across the country, determining that it is unconstitutional to exclude parents choosing religious schools from these programs. CJV Managing Director Rabbi Yaakov Menken issued the following statement:
The Maine law was obviously prejudicial against religiously-motivated parents, forcing them to choose between shouldering secular education costs entirely on their own or denying their children the opportunity to attend a religious school. As we said in our brief to the Supreme Court, this was “an obvious burden and disincentive for religious observance,” and we welcome the Court’s recognition that this was a violation of the Free Exercise Clause of the Bill of Rights. Given the impact upon other forms of federal and state tuition assistance, parents and children nationwide will benefit from this important decision.