Monday, December 21, 2015

Endless Efforts to Undermine Public Education

Edd Doerr
Article XI, Section 10 of the Nevada constitution: “No public funds of any kind or character whatever, state, county, or municipal, shall be used for sectarian purposes.” 

But as noted in the article Nevada Taxpayers File Motion to Immediately Stop Implementation of SB 302 SB 302 proposes a voucher program that "
"uses public money for religious instruction and other religious functions and activities at religious schools, in violation of this strict constitutional prohibition. With over a century of Nevada precedent and Nevada Attorney General opinions, the motion makes clear that voucher program funds are public funds. Any pass-through bank account for funds that the state continues to own and control is a fiction that does not alter the public character of the funds."

“The Nevada taxpayers in Duncan are standing up and asking the Court to immediately block implementation of this unconstitutional program. SB 302 funds private religious indoctrination, and funds private religious schools which operate with discriminatory admissions policies, all at the expense of the existing system of public schools and public instruction. This directly contravenes the Nevada Constitution and more than 130 years of state-law precedent,” said Amy M. Rose, ACLU of Nevada legal director.

Let’s hope that the above mentioned ACLU lawsuit is successful and that the state courts are more attentive to the state constitution than the nose-thumbing Republicans who dominate the legislature, unlike the disgraceful Indiana supreme court.

These attacks on public education, church-state separation, and religious liberty have been led for decades by Republicans in state legislatures and Congress for decades. 
See Edd Doerr's column titled “Public Education under Siege” in the current issue of Free Inquiry. 

Also, Americans for Religious Liberty has been reporting and analyzing this issue for 34 years. See ARL’s web site –

Republicans in their endless efforts to undermine public  education seem oblivious to the 50 years of state referenda and opinion polls showing that Americans oppose diverting public funds to sectarian and other private schools by 2 to 1.

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