In St. Augustine School v. Underly, (ED WI, Sept. 19, 2022), a Wisconsin federal district court, deciding a case on remand from the 7th Circuit, issued a declaratory judgment that state school officials violated Wisconsin law by failing to furnish bus transportation to students attending St. Augustine. At issue was whether St. Augustine School was affiliated with the same denomination as another nearby Catholic school so that only one of the schools would be entitled to bus transportation. The district court said that under the terms of the remand, it could not grant relief on plaintiff’s constitutional claims. However, because another appeal was likely, the court did express its opinion on those claims, saying in part:
because the rule as applied by the defendants did not cut St. Augustine off from benefits “for no other reason” than that it was a religious school,… the defendants’ denial of benefits did not violate the Free Exercise Clause.