Regina, Canada, Mar 13, 2019 / 01:48 am
The government of Saskatchewan in Canada is arguing that it should be allowed to pay for non-Catholic students to attend Catholic school, appealing a 2017 court decision that could force up to 10,000 students out of Catholic schools because they are not Catholic.
Court of Queen's Bench Justice Donald Layh first handed down the ruling in April 2017, saying that any provincial government funding for "non-minority faiths" would violate Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the state's duty of religious neutrality, and equality rights.
Saskatchewan is arguing that its current model, whereby students of all faiths at Catholic schools are given funding, is religiously neutral, and that demanding religious proof to determine funding would not be religiously neutral, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reports.
Saskatchewan is one of three Canadian provinces that partially fund Catholic school systems with taxpayer money. If it stands, the ruling could affect 26 other faith-based schools besides the Catholic schools, including a school for Muslim students.