With the 1970 amendment, Michigans Constitution became one of the most repressive
in the country with respect to parental choice involving nonpublic schools. In an attempt
to limit state support to religious schools, advocates of the amendment foreclosed the
opportunity for nonpublic school educational choice programs that were religion-neutral
and consistent with state and federal constitutional requirements. Michigan residents have
lived with the result for over a quarter of a century.
The passing of more than two decades has brought about change in Michigan. Nonpublic
schools are attracting more students, support for parental choice in education is growing
rapidly, and it is not clear that 1970s Proposal C would pass in our present day. It is
time to reevaluate the language that is openly hostile and punitive to parents who would
like to send their children to a nonpublic school without having to pay twice.