In a May 1 letter to President Obama, U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter said he would be retiring from the nation's high court in June. Souter's announcement has set off a flurry of speculation about a successor, and it has educators wondering what his departure might mean for schools.


In June 2000, the moderate Souter wrote the dissent on Mitchell v. Helms, a case deciding whether the use of federal funds for private schools violates the First Amendment's establishment clause.


Chapter 2 of the Education Consolidation and Improvement Act of 1981 provides for the allocation of funds for educational materials--such as...

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