Legal Alert: Kennedy v. Bremerton School District 597 U.S. ____ (2022)

Debra Daniel

On June 27th the Supreme Court handed down its ruling in the Kennedy v. Bremerton School District case, which asked whether a public school employee praying during school sports activities was protected speech, and if so, is the employee’s public school employer permitted to prohibit prayer to avoid violating the Establishment Clause? 

The Supreme Court’s 6-3 opinion in favor of the public school employee held that “the free exercise and free speech clauses of the First Amendment protect an individual engaging in a personal religious observance from government reprisal; [and] the Constitution neither mandates nor permits the government to suppress such religious expression.” The court’s ruling is notable in that it overturned decades of precedent when it comes to the separation of church and state in a school setting. Please visit this related summary by MABE Director of Legal & Policy Services Debra Yerg Daniel for a breakdown of this case and landmark ruling; how to apply the ruling moving forward; and relevant, existing provisions in Maryland law.

For further information, contact Debra Yerg Daniel, Ph: (443) 603-0391.

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