American Federation of Teachers  President Randi Weingarten and Montana Federation of Public Employees President Eric Feaver today issued the following joint statement on the U.S. Supreme Court’s agreement to hear oral arguments on the Montana-based case  Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue:

Weingarten said:

“The separation of church and state harkens back to the beginnings of the U.S. Constitution.  This long tradition—established to ensure the religious freedom of all—should be protected by conservatives and liberals alike. It’s alarming that the current Supreme Court would try to revisit and undo that precedent, in public schools no less, as it sets a dangerous standard and opens the door to the dismantling of a basic tenet of our nation’s democracy.”

Feaver said:

“The Supreme Court’s decision is sad and troubling.  It suggests Montana’s Constitution may be at risk right along with our public schools.  It suggests extraordinary federal intrusion into the constitutional and public school affairs of this state and perhaps many others.”