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Constitutional Concerns

  • School voucher programs are regularly challenged in court for using taxpayer dollars to promote religious doctrine, thus violating the Equal Protection clauses of the U.S. Constitution. (Source: ACLU)

  • The Arizona Constitution provides an additional layer of protection above and beyond the U.S. Constitution. Unlike in many states, it specifically mandates a “general and uniform public school system” as the duty of the state. (Source: Arizona Constitution, Article XI, Section 1)

  • Arizona’s Constitution also clearly states that public funds must remain separate from religion: “No public money or property shall be appropriated for or applied to any religious worship, exercise, or instruction, or to the support of any religious establishment.” (Source: Arizona Constitution, Article II, Section 12)

  • Most school voucher programs allow participating private schools to discriminate in some form. For instance, some programs allow schools to reject applicants because of low academic achievement or discipline problems. Other programs permit participating schools to discriminate on the basis of disability, gender, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity. (Source: Anti-Defamation League)