"Betsy DeVos" by Gage Skidmore / CC BY-SA 2.0

DeVos allows religious groups to provide taxpayer-funded services in private schools

Mar 13, 2019

By Moriah Balingit and Morgan Smith

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced this week she would no longer enforce a rule that bars religious institutions from providing certain taxpayer-funded services in private schools, saying the restriction ran afoul of a recent high-court decision.

Under the federal education law, private schools are entitled to many of the federally funded services that public schools receive, particularly if they educate children who are from low-income households or who are English-language learners. The rules, called equitable-services provisions, mean that public school districts pay for professional development for private-school teachers, or send members of their own staffs to provide reading help to struggling children who are eligible for extra help.

School districts will often contract with third parties to provide the services. But the rules barred school districts from contracting with religious institutions in these circumstances.

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