John Sparks: Espinoza v. Montana an important win for religious liberty

Sometimes, the facts of a case have an emotional appeal in addition to a strong constitutional basis. Espinoza v. Montana certainly qualifies.

Kendra Espinoza, a hard-working (three jobs) and determined single mom, decided to take her two daughters out of the local public schools and enroll them in Stillwater Christian School in Kalispell, Montana. She explained that she “wanted them to be able to read the Bible and be taught how to pray, and taught from that faith-based perspective.”

Espinoza was only able to afford the private Christian school tuition because of a scholarship program that the Montana Legislature had put in place in 2015. The legislation created a state tax credit of up to $150 for individuals or businesses which made donations to organizations that funded scholarships for private school tuition, which included Christian schools.