Argument Over Religious Tuition Payments Heard In Federal Court

Jun 25, 2019

PORTLAND, Maine - A small group of Maine parents that's backed by the U.S. Department of Justice says in federal court that the state should pay tuition for some students to attend religious schools.

The case arrived in U.S. District Court in Portland on Monday for oral arguments. The case hinges on interpretation of a state tuition policy for students in districts that don't have a high school. The state has long agreed to pay tuition for a private school, but not a religious one.
 
The families argued denying tuition for religious schools violates their constitutional rights. They say school decisions are up to parents.
 
The American Civil Liberties Union of Maine is among the groups arguing in favor of the state's policy. Legal director Zachary Heiden says courts have consistently upheld it.