PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a win today for First Amendment rights in Carson v. Makin, with the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruling in favor of parents using state tuition assistance for religious schools.
“I am proud to have joined the amicus in this case supporting school choice,” said Arizona Attorney General Brnovich. “Education is the key to upward mobility in our society. A state should not be able to discriminate against a school simply because it is religious.”
Maine operates a tuition assistance program for high school students since more than half of its school districts do not have a high school. However, Maine has specifically excluded any type of “sectarian” school from that program. Because of this religious exclusion, families must either forgo an education benefit to which they are statutorily entitled, or send their children to a school that will not best meet their needs. The exclusion of religious schools violates the First Amendment rights of parents because it discriminates against schools and parents based on the religious status of the schools that parents choose for their children.
SCOTUS held that the state of Maine violated the Constitution by prohibiting students from choosing to use their tuition aid to attend schools that provide religious instruction.