by Jorge Gomez • 4 min read
Whether it’s on the East Coast or the West Coast, it seems some states simply don’t want Americans like you choosing a religious education for your children. For some reason, state officials insist on discriminating against religious schools or parents who choose a faith-based curriculum. They just keep treating kids and religious families unfairly.
Look at the way California is mistreating and illegally discriminating against three of our clients, the Woolard, Gonzales and Dodson families. They are being told they CAN’T use public funds to purchase curriculum, materials or classes that are religious – or even mention religion. One of our clients was expelled from a charter school because they selected a religious curriculum.
We recently filed a federal lawsuit against the California Department of Education. We’re taking this to court to make sure state officials follow the law and Supreme Court precedent.
Watch this week’s episode of First Liberty Live! below. Senior Counsel Justin Butterfield goes into the details of our California charter schools case:
Religious schools in Maine are facing similar discrimination. Officials in that state won’t let our client—Bangor Christian School—participate in the state tuition program. That case is pending in federal court.
First Liberty also is in the midst of a legal battle in Oklahoma. Our legal team is helping defend the nation’s first religious charter school. Radical activists—as well as high-ranking state leaders—sued in court. Why? Because they think it was unconstitutional for the Oklahoma Charter School Board to approve St. Isidore of Seville Catholic Virtual School as a charter school. We asked the court to dismiss the lawsuit.
These attacks continue happening in virtually every corner of the country, even though the U.S. Supreme Court has issued several landmark decisions protecting religious education nationwide. These rulings have made clear that all religious organizations and people of faith must be treated just like everyone else.
This includes the precedent-setting decision in Carson v. Makin, our Treat Children Fairly case, which held that states can’t discriminate against parents who want to use state-provided funding to attend religious schools merely because those schools are religious.
What’s the takeaway? There’s no doubt we’re winning at a historic rate. Religious freedom is on an incredible winning streak. But there’s still work to do. A lot of work.
Opponents of religious liberty appear more emboldened than ever. No matter how many times they get schooled on the Constitution, they just refuse to follow the Supreme Court’s direction. Frankly, the fact that we’re having to fight so many of these cases tells us they don’t really care what the nation’s highest court has said. So, we have to keep fighting for what is right.
Religious families and schools are confronting some very serious problems and discrimination. And these legal battles are taking place all across the country. There are so many cases we still need to win—and we need your ongoing support to add on more victories.
These are big cases with huge opportunities to impact the future. But as you can know, fighting on multiple fronts is costly. Taking on state officials in court demands a lot of resources. The only way we can win is with you on our side.
From California to Maine, families are counting on us. You’ve helped us beat these bullies in court before. Will you help us do it again?