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Federal appeals court rules Vermont cannot exclude religious education from private school tuition program

Vermont’s Town Tuition Program (“TTP”) requires school districts that lack a public high school to provide for its residents’ high school education by paying private school tuition. Because Vermont’s constitution guarantees that “no person shall be compelled to support a place of worship,” the Vermont Supreme Court, in a 1999 case (Chittenden Town), ruled that TTP funds cannot be used to reimburse tuition at a “sectarian” school unless the school takes steps to safeguard against the government funds being put to religious use.