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Pierce v. Society of Sisters (docket #: 583) (1925)  [Findlaw]

Argument Date 03/16/1925
Decided 06/01/1925
Supreme Court Vote 9-0
Supreme Court Ruling The Compulsory Education of 1922 unreasonably interferes with the liberty of parents and guardians to direct the upbringing and education of children under their control.
 
IssueWhether the Compulsory Education Act of 1922, which requires every parent, guardian, or other person having control or charge of custody of a child between 8 and 16 years to send him to a public violates a parent’s right to choose education for his child.
Majority Opinion Reynolds, J.
Lower Court Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
Lower Court Ruling Issued a preliminary injunction against the enforcement of the Compulsory Education Act of 1922.
Lawyers
For Petitioner
Willis S. Moore

For Respondent
William D. Guthrie

Briefs
For Amicus
George E. Chamberlain and Albery H. Putney (for Petitioner Pierce)

J.P. Kavanaugh (for Respondent Society of the Sisters)

John C. Veatch (for Respondent Hill Military Academy)

Opinion - Lower Court
Society of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary v. Pierce, 296 F. 928, (D.C. Or., 1924)
News
"Court Invalidates Oregon School Law; Federal Judges Rule Compulsion Infringes Parents’ Constitutional Rights. Enforcement is Enjoined, State Will Appeal to Supreme Court to Make All Children Go to Public Schools," New York Times, Apr. 1, 1924, pg. 1
"Excerpts From Catholics’ Legal Study of Federal Aid to Church Schools," New York Times, Dec. 15, 1961, pg. 33
"Oregon School Law Declared Invalid by Supreme Court; Bench Unanimously Upholds Right of Parent to Dictate Child’s Education," New York Times, Jun. 2, 1925, pg. 1
Other
Carter, Stephen, "Parents, Religion, and Schools: Reflections on Pierce, 70 Years Later," 27 Seton Hall Law Review 1194 (1997)
Chemerinsky, Erwin, CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: PRINCIPLES & POLICIES (2nd ed., 2002), sect.
Nowak, John E. & Rotunda, Ronald D., PRINCIPLES OF CONSTITUTIONAL LAW (2ND ED., 2005), sect. 17.7
Tribe, Laurence, AMERICAN CONSTITUTIONAL LAW (22nd ed., 1988) sect. 14.16, 15.6
Witte, John, Jr., RELIGION AND THE AMERICAN CONSTITUTIONAL EXPERIMENT (2000), p. 111
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