The first week of June should be designated National Education Freedom Week in recognition of the unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Americans have a constitutional right to choose private education, according to U.S. Rep. John Carter (R-TX).
Carter this week introduced legislation to remind the nation of the historic 9-0 decision by the nation's highest court on June 1, 1925 in Pierce v. Society of Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (268 U.S. 510; 45 S. Ct. 571; 69 L. Ed. 1070; 39 A.L.R. 468).
In that case, the justices confirmed the constitutional right of parents to choose private over public education. The landmark decision ended debate in the nation that began with the growth of widespread public education in the 1800's as to whether the state or the parents had prime legal authority to determine how a child was educated. "The child is not the mere creature of the state," wrote the court in the unanimous decision.
"Officially recognizing this constitutional right each June will serve the nation well in the ongoing debate over school choice," says Carter, House Republican Conference Secretary and a former Texas judge. "As we seek to expand educational freedom for families in this new century, there are more options than ever before. From public charter schools, to private and religious schools, to homeschooling, there is no reason we can't offer school choices to every American student. But the key to preserving educational freedom is in educating the public on their rights. Far too many Americans are totally unaware that this issue was settled in their favor long ago. This annual observance will serve to remind every family in America that they have a constitutional right to determine how best to educate their children, that cannot be usurped by government."