Future of Educational Finance
Grand Canyon University: EDA-535
October 1, 2014
Gary Marx stated “identifying, monitoring and considering the implications of trends is one of the most basic processes for creating the future” (Stevenson, 2010 p. 1). The world of education is forever changing at a pace that gets more rapid as the years go on. The decisions made in the past have laid the foundation of education today, as will recent changes affect the future. Programs such as choice schooling and No Child Left Behind will impact school funding. Rulings such as the Lemon Test and separation of church and state will impact decisions that can potentially result in litigation and court ...view middle of the document...
Approximately twenty percent of Pennsylvania’s children attended non-public schools and ninety-six percent of the schools had a religious affiliation. The high courts looked at its own precedents and determined that, in order for a law to be in compliance with the Establishment clause it, “must have a secular legislative purpose; second, its principal or primary effect must be one that neither advances nor inhibits religion; finally, the statute must not foster "an excessive government entanglement with religion" (Barnes, 2010, p. 2-3). The Lemon test was created to, “determine when a law has the effect of establishing religion” (The Basics, 2014, p. 3). The court applied the Lemon test to the Pennsylvania and Rhode Island supplemental funding programs and deemed that the programs in both states were unconstitutional (The Lemon Test, 2009). Both programs met the first requirement of the Lemon test as they had a secular purpose. However, the court determined that it was unclear if the programs met the second set of criteria as “while the aid was intended for secular use, it was not entirely secular in effect” (The Lemon Test, 2009, p. 1). The court decided that it did not need to establish if the programs met the second part of the Lemon test as they failed to meet the third criterion as both programs “excessively entangling state administrators with the operations of parochial schools” (The Lemon Test, 2009, p. 1). The Lemon test has
“become an extremely influential legal doctrine, governing not only cases
involving government funding of religious institutions but also cases in
which the government promoted religious messages. Over the years,
however, many justices have criticized the test because the court has often
applied it to require a strict separation between church and state” (The Lemon
Test, 2009, p. 1).
The test has been the foundation for many of the court’s ruling regarding the establishment clause since 1971.
The idea of vouchers for education was first introduced in early 1950 in a move to privatize education. In that same year, as a result of Brown v. Board of Education, the southern states put the first voucher program into action as a way to “enable white students of all income levels to attend the segregation academies and continue receiving a publicly-funded, all white education” (Save our Schools NJ, 2014). In 1989, Wisconsin’s more modern voucher programs, focused on poor children of all races. (Save our Schools NJ, 2014). Regardless of the nature of the voucher program, the impact is the same- taxpayer funds being diverted from public school funding.
In 2002, the Supreme Court ruling of the case of Zelman V. Simmons-Harris stated that it was not a violation of the Establishment Clause to provide scholarships for some students to attend private or parochial schools. This ruling had a subsequent impact on the development of S1872, also known as the Opportunity Scholarship Act. This act...