WASHINGTON (April 25, 2022)—Today the Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments in Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, also known as the “praying coach” case. Joseph Kennedy is a former football coach for the Bremerton School District who repeatedly led his team to pray on the school’s football field. The coach has argued that the school violated his First Amendment rights to speech while the school says as a public employee the coach’s actions violate the Establishment Clause.

Robert Tuttle is the David R. and Sherry Kirschner Berz Research Professor of Law and Religion at the George Washington University Law School. He also worked on an amicus brief in support of the school district’s position.

Ahead of April 25 oral arguments Tuttle said this about Kennedy v. Bremerton School District:

“There’s been this perception that religion in America is under attack by forces of secularism. Schools are not supposed to be in the religion business. Religious education belongs to families and their religious communities. It does not belong to public schools.

This case really press this line between the sacred and the secular and whether it's possible to maintain an idea of secularity of government in the face of those who claim that any assertion of secularity is really a promotion of secularism.”