Jennifer Daniels of USCCB talks about aid for Catholic schools in the recent stimulus package. Then, Justin Lombardo of the Archdiocese of Chicago discusses the documented success of Archdiocesan schools with in-person learning during the pandemic as outlined in a study published in an academic journal. Finally, Abe Scarr of Illinois PIRG discusses passage of the Predatory Loan Prevention Act during the recent lame-duck session.
Ashley Feasley of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops joins host Bob Gilligan to talk about a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that ruled an effort to rescind the DACA program was "arbitrary and capricious." Chicago attorney Jim Geoly discusses a different U.S. Supreme Court decision that safeguards religious freedom in employment at Catholic schools. Finally, Dr. Jim Rigg, superintendent of the Archdiocese of Catholic Schools, talks about the safeguards put in place for the reopening of schools this fall amid the ongoing pandemic.
The U.S. Supreme Court today looked to a 2012 decision establishing the doctrine of “ministerial exception” in ruling that Catholic school teachers could not sue for employment discrimination. In writing the majority opinion in the 7-2 decision in Our Lady of Guadalupe School vs. Morrissey-Berru, Justice Samuel Alito expanded upon the concept of “ministerial exception” created in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School vs. EEOC. In the 2012 case, the court ruled that ministers could not sue churches and religious institutions for employment discrimination. The high court today agreed the exception applied to two Catholic school teachers because they played a key role in educating their students in the faith.
The Catholic Conference of Illinois coordinated with the state's six Catholic school superintendents on a letter sent today to Gov. JB Pritzker and Illinois State Superintendent Carmen Ayala regarding monies for nonpublic schools in last week's Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
As the coronavirus continues to spread across Illinois and other states, the six Catholic arch/dioceses have suspended public Mass, closed Catholic schools and shuttered pastoral centers in order to limit congregate groups and maintain the “social distancing” required to prohibit the spread of the virus.