Court Extends NYC Church Access to Public Schools

A federal appeals court has rejected an attempt by New York City to keep churches out of its public schools while a judge decides whether a city law banning them from its school buildings can be enforced.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued a two-page order Wednesday that declined the city's request to block a lower court judge who stopped the city from enforcing its no-worship-in-schools policy.

Jane Gordon, Senior Counsel, Appeals Division of the New York City Law Departmnet, said the order was unusual. "However, it calls for a speedy resolution of this litigation," she noted. "We look forward to concluding this matter in accordance with the Court's expedited time frame." 

The appeals court urged the judge to issue a final decision by mid-June so it can be resolved by the start of the new school year.

Federal Judge Loretta Preska earlier this month ruled that a tiny Bronx church would probably win its lawsuit seeking to stop the city from enforcing its law to stop church services in schools.


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