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Case Summary for Zorach v. Clauson
Under 3210 of the New York Education Law and the regulations thereunder, New York City permits its public schools to release students during school hours, on written requests of their parents, so that they may leave the school buildings and grounds and go to religious centers for religious instruction or devotional exercises. The same section makes school attendance compulsory; students not released stay in the classrooms; and the churches report to the schools the names of children released from public schools who fail to report for religious instruction. The program involves neither religious instruction in public schools nor the expenditure of public funds.

Held: This program does not violate the First Amendment, made applicable to the States by the Fourteenth Amendment. McCollum v. Board of Education, 333 U.S. 203, distinguished.

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