Brief Fact Summary. This case seeks to reverse the Court’s mandate in a prior case, Aguilar v. Felton, 473 U.S. 402 (1985), on the grounds that Establishment Clause jurisprudence has changed and thereby overruled the holding of Aguilar.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. This case stands for the proposition that the Establishment Clause is not static, but rather dynamic and jurisprudence regarding its application needs to be reviewed in terms with societal changes.
Held. The Court held that Aguilar could be overturned and remanded, directing the District Court to lift its Aguilar injunctions in the interest of judicial efficiency. This holding allowed for Title I funds to be sent directly to parochial schools, for their own use, so long as it was not inconsistent with the Establishment Clause.
Dissent. Justice David Souter (J. Souter) dissented, disagreeing with the authorization of direct State aid to religious institutions.
Discussion. In reviewing Establishment Clause jurisprudence, the Supreme Court of the United States (Supreme Court) will consider the current needs of society and balance them with enforcement of the clause.